PWTransit workers ratify new agreement, ending nearly two-month-long strike

Main Image
Four men standing together.

COMOX, B.C.– Unifor Local 114 members at Pacific Western Transportation (PWTransit) in Comox Valley and Campbell River, B.C., have successfully ratified a new collective agreement that addresses some fixes to the public transit system.

“Congratulations to the bargaining committee and to the members for standing strong at the bargaining table and on the picket lines to make a stand for improving public transit,” said Unifor National President Lana Payne.

“Our union’s support behind our members was unwavering and brought issues such as attraction and retention and pay parity to the forefront to get action beneficial not only for our members, but for the public who rely on an efficient public transit.”

The ratification vote took place Feb. 1 with 80% voting in support of the new agreement. The union estimates it will take about another week to get the buses roadworthy. Mechanics returned to work last week to get a head start on the process.

Workers at PWTransit withdrew bus services the morning of Dec. 15, 2023. The 75 Unifor Local 114 members work as transit operators, HandyDART operators, mechanics, and cleaners.

Wages increased in this contract at 9.5% in the first year, 3.5% in the second year and 2.54% in the last year.

And as of April 1, 2026, all job classifications will get a wage adjustment of 83 cents an hour.

The new agreement also stipulates that the employer will pay 2.75% of gross wages into the Union Group RRSP after the probation period. And that the RRSP will increase to 4% on April 1, 2024, if employees match the employer’s contribution at minimum.

A $5/hour premium will be paid for Driver Trainers (one per depot) while performing training duties. The employer will establish dedicated Driver Trainers.

Mechanic and apprentice members also received a substantial $900 tool allowance each year.

“Our members are looking forward to returning to work, proudly servicing the Comox Valley and Campbell River communities,” said Unifor Local 114 President Gord McGrath. “We’re pleased to finally have a contract that speaks to our members’ needs and creates a proper work-life-balance for them.”

Unifor continues to demand more transparency from the government on how BC Transit (a Crown corporation) funds their contracted companies, including the structure of how funding is distributed.

Unifor represents 20,000 members across the road transportation sector, including 6,500 transit operators and skilled trades staff working in urban transit.

Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad and strives to create progressive change for a better future.

For more information, please contact Unifor National Communications Representative Jenny Yuen at @email or (416) 938-6157.

Media Contact

Jenny Yuen

National Communications Representative