New contract secures pension and plant's future


TORONTO, Sept. 2, 2014 /CNW/ - After nine weeks on strike, members of Unifor Local 252 at Emerald Energy from Waste in Brampton, Ont., have ratified a new collective agreement that not only maintains their pension and wages, but secures the future of the facility.

"These workers held strong in the face of concessionary demands. It is a testament to their solidarity that they come out of these talks with a good contract that preserves their pension," said David Moffat, Unifor Assistant to the President.

The new collective agreement gives the workers a lump-sum payment in each year of the four-year deal, plus a cost of living allowance in the fourth year. The company has also agreed to make a major capital investment in the plant.

"This contract secures the long-term employment for our members," Unifor national representative Barry Lines said.

The pension plan at the plant is preserved under the new contract. Demands for concessions came from the plant's new owners, U-Pak Disposals. The workers began their strike July 3.

As well, Emerald committed to training for existing workers on any technological changes made at the plant, while improving posting procedures for new jobs and vacation improvements.

The members of Local 252 were joined on the picket line by several Unifor activists from other locals, including at a rally in July outside U-Pak head offices, as a show of support. Several locals also donated money to the strikers.

Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 305,000 workers. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union merged.