DHL bargaining impasse forces union to apply for a federal conciliator


OTTAWA, Oct. 26, 2016 /CNW/ - Frustrated by a lack of progress during bargaining with the world's largest shipping company DHL, Unifor has applied for conciliation under the federal labour code.

"DHL doesn't seem interested in resolving this negotiation before their busy holiday season," said Jenny Ahn, Assistant to the Unifor National President. "DHL's behaviour is steering us toward a December strike in their Canadian service nation-wide."

The employer has repeatedly refused to respond to the union's monetary proposals, let alone make a counter offer. Without a willing bargaining partner, Unifor says negotiations with DHL have reached an impasse.

Before engaging in job action, the union has opted to apply for a conciliator to move talks along.

"Labour negotiations can be a respectful give-and-take, or they can be contentious and disruptive. DHL has chosen a path that will only harm their customers," said Ahn. "Everyone knows that DHL is massively profitable—it's time to ensure fair compensation for the workers that make that happen."

A conciliation application from one of the bargaining agents triggers the appointment of a conciliator who works at the bargaining table with the employer and the union for up to 60 days. The federal labour board appoints the conciliator.

Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 310,000 workers. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers unions merged.