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Unifor opens VIA Rail bargaining with eyes on real gains for members in passenger rail

October 25, 2019 - 12:00 AM

MONTREAL- Unifor’s VIA Rail locals open bargaining in Montreal as contracts near expiration for more than 2,000 members.

“Unifor members are looking forward to delivering the highest quality service for passengers today, and through the next generation of rail infrastructure,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “These bargaining teams are experienced, and ready to represent workers in the fight for a fair contract.”

Unifor represents maintenance workers, on-board service personnel, chefs, sales agents and customer service staff at VIA Rail.

“As we look toward a greener future with increased use of passenger rail, Unifor’s goal is to ensure that jobs in the sector remain good jobs with fair pay, decent benefits, and a dignified retirement,” said Renaud Gagné, Unifor Quebec Director.

Members identified a number of key issues in this contract negotiation, including a strengthened pension plan, and end to contracting out, and made-in-Canada fleet sourcing.

The current collective agreements expire on December 31, 2019. No strike vote has been taken.

Unifor is also calling for a national transportation strategy with supporting legislation for VIA to promote a safe, affordable, accessible and environmentally friendly transportation system from the Maritimes to the Corridor, including South Western Ontario, and the Western Prairies, all the way to British Columbia.

For more information, or to arrange an interview, contact Sarah McCue, National Communications Representative at sarah.mccue@unifor.org or 416-458-3307.

For interviews in Quebec, contact Marie-Andrée L'Heureux, National Communications Representative-Quebec at Marie-Andree.LHeureux@unifor.org or 514-916-7373 (cell).