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Vancouver truckers vote 100% in favour of a strike

NEW WESTMINSTER, BC, March 1, 2014 /CNW/ - Members of Unifor-Vancouver Container Truckers' Association (VCTA) voted overwhelmingly in favour of strike action this morning. Truckers cited a lack of progress at the bargaining table for taking the vote.

"Our members have sent a very clear message: enough is enough," said Paul Johal, President of Unifor-VCTA.

Unifor-VCTA's collective agreement expired in June 2012. During that time, the union has been raising concerns that long line-ups and wait times at the Port of Vancouver are costing truck drivers money. Unifor-VCTA is demanding increased rates of pay at the bargaining table and wants the rates standardized and enforced across the sector to put an end to under-cutting.

"Container truckers, like workers across this country, make the economy work," said Jerry Dias, National President of Unifor. "They deserve to be compensated fairly for their role in generating wealth, but if workers can't share in that wealth, we'll help shut that port down until they get it."

Unifor is also calling on the federal and provincial governments and the Ports to appoint Mediator Vince Ready to review the situation and make recommendations to solve the long-standing issues.

The local is now in a position to issue 72-hour strike notice to employers.

Unifor-VCTA is a composite local, representing distinct bargaining units across many employers. The 100% vote represents an average result for all of the units.

Unifor was founded Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers unions merged. With more than 300,000 members, Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector.