Unifor Local 16-O members on strike at the Compass Minerals salt mine in Goderich were happy to see three buses of fellow Unifor members pull up to their picket line on Wednesday, May 2.
The buses carried dozens of members who were attending classes at the Port Elgin Family Education Centre (FEC), an hour away on Highway 21.
Unifor’s Education Director Tim Carrie co-ordinated the trip from the Centre and says that if the strike lasts longer, Local 16-O members can expect more support from the FEC.
“We’re here to tell Unifor miners in Goderich that we have your back, and that we’re in this with you to the end,” said Carrie.
The company’s latest offer included a long list of concessions including reducing benefits, extending shift length, forced overtime, and weakening existing contracting-out provisions in the collective agreement. Unifor Local 16-O says the employer ignored the majority of its proposals.
“The employer has taken a very aggressive approach that simply left our members with little option but to take strike action,” said Glenn Sonier, Unifor National Representative responsible for Local 16-O. “Compass has created a climate of disrespect that must be resolved before this mine can operate again.”
Unifor represents 348 miners in production, shipping, and maintenance. In February 2018, the union says the employer tried to mislead 48 laid off workers into accepting a severance package that would have cancelled recall rights.