Unifor warns of possible summer disruption to Victoria Clipper service

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Ferry on the water with mountains in the background

VICTORIA—Members of Unifor Local 114 working at the Victoria Clipper say the pace of bargaining for their next contract suggests that the Victoria-Seattle ferry service could be disrupted before the end of the summer.

“The Clipper’s negotiators seem to be stuck in a pandemic concessionary mindset,” said Lana Payne, Unifor National President. “Ferry ridership has rebounded from COVID-19. The company simply has no excuse to drag its feet on a fair contract for workers.”

Clipper workers are seeking to negotiate fair wage increases, adjustments to the scheduling system, and better job security. Local 114 successfully applied for the assistance of a conciliator to help close the gap between the parties, but during the entire 60-day conciliation period, the company only agreed to meet for three days.

“The Clipper is a key part of the region’s tourism. The workers responsible for the smooth operation of ferry services deserve a fair agreement,” said Gavin McGarrigle, Unifor Western Regional Director.

Contract disputes and service disruptions would be new to the Clipper service. The German company who purchased the service in 2016 has been more difficult to work with, says Unifor.

Unifor Local 114 represents 25 workers at the Victoria side of the Clipper’s workforce in customer service, ticketing, baggage handling and docking.

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.

Photo by  licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0.

Media Contact

Ian Boyko

National Communications Representative - Western Region