United Steelworkers 1-1937 workers walked off their jobs at Western Forest Products back in July. Pictured here, a November union rally in Nanaimo. (News Bulletin file)

United Steelworkers 1-1937 workers walked off their jobs at Western Forest Products back in July. Pictured here, a November union rally in Nanaimo. (News Bulletin file)

Steelworkers union, Western Forest Products look to end seven-month strike

Two sides meeting with mediators Sunday

Western Forest Products and United Steelworkers Local 1-1937 are headed back to the table with mediators Sunday in an effort to end a seven-month strike.

Union workers walked off the job in early July citing the company hadn’t addressed union proposals seriously and kept “massive concessions on the bargaining table.” Western Forest Products confirmed the two sides are meeting Sunday, Feb. 2.

“We have a meeting scheduled with mediators, Vince Ready and Amanda Rogers, this weekend and we will take our lead from them on next steps,” the company said in an e-mail. “Western is doing everything we can to reach a mutually beneficial settlement with the USW.”

RELATED: Striking WFP workers rally against concessions

RELATED: Western Forest Products workers on Island strike

Brian Butler, USW 1-1937 president, did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but in a press release, the union expressed hope that the company would change its position on alternate shifts, adjust its drug and alcohol policy and withdraw its concessions.

Butler previously told the News Bulletin that the alternate schedules were “unsafe” and referred to the company drug and alcohol policy as an “arbitrary process” which isn’t applied fairly. Binding arbitration in previous negotiations is responsible for the current impasse, according to Butler.

“That binding process in 2004 has led to this strike today, stripping away workers’ rights,” Butler told the News Bulletin in December. “Workers are fighting to regain some control over their safety and well-being in the workplace.”



reporter@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Labour

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Nanaimo RCMP asked the public to help locate Brandon Sheldon, 15, who had been missing since Feb. 16. (Photo submitted)
UPDATE: RCMP report missing Nanaimo teen has been found safe and sound

Brandon Sheldon, 15, of Nanaimo missing since Tuesday

Views of Nanaimo, Newcastle Channel and the Strait of Georgia from the Nanaimo Parkway. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Editorial: We have a say in how our city of 100,000 grows

City of Nanaimo wants to hear from residents as transition from small town to big city continues

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

Nanaimo Yacht Club used a crane to lift six new boat sheds from its parking lot and into the water to take their places in the club’s marina Monday. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
New boat sheds hoisted into the water at Nanaimo Yacht Club

Shelters for boats, constructed in Nanaimo Yacht Club parking lot, moved by crane Monday

Nanaimo’s Joanne Secord is a quarterfinalist in Inked Magazine’s Cover Model Search contest. (Janayh Wright Photography)
50-year-old Nanaimo mom hopes her tattoos will earn her a magazine cover shoot

Joanne Secord on cusp of semifinals in Inked Magazine contest

Nanaimo Yacht Club used a crane to lift six new boat sheds from its parking lot and into the water to take their places in the club’s marina Monday. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
New boat sheds hoisted into the water at Nanaimo Yacht Club

Shelters for boats, constructed in Nanaimo Yacht Club parking lot, moved by crane Monday

Vancouver Canucks left wing Antoine Roussel (26) tries to get a shot past Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith (41) during second period NHL action in Vancouver, Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canucks cough up 3-0 lead, fall 4-3 to visiting Edmonton Oilers

Vancouver falls to 8-13-2 on the NHL season

Jessica McCallum-Miller receives her signed oath of office from city chief administrative officer Heather Avison on Nov. 5, 2018 after being elected to Terrace City Council. McCallum-Miller resigned on Feb. 22, 2021, saying she felt unsupported and unheard by council. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Terrace’s 1st Indigenous councillor resigns citing ‘systemic and internalized racism,’ sexism

McCallum-Miller said in a Facebook post she felt unheard and unsupported by council

Temporary changes to allow for wholesale pricing for the hospitality industry were implemented June 2020 and set to expire March 31.	(Pixabay photo)
Pubs, restaurants to pay wholesale prices on liquor permanently in COVID-recovery

Pre-pandemic, restaurateurs and tourism operators paid full retail price on most liquor purchases

Wade Dyck with Luna, a dog who went missing near the Chasm for 17 days following a rollover on Feb. 5. (Photo submitted).
Dog missing for 17 days through cold snap reunited with owner in northern B.C.

Family ecstatic to have the Pyrenees-Shepherd cross back home.

Quesnel RCMP confirmed they are investigating a residential break-in at a home on the Barkerville Highway. (File image)
Thieves make off with $300K in Cariboo miner’s retirement gold

Tim Klemen is offering a reward for the return of his gold

Cowichan Tribes members line up at a drive-up clinic on Wednesday, Jan. 13 to receive the first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in the region. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Cowichan Tribes COVID-19 death count hits four

Second doses of Pfizer vaccine expected on March 8 as community count hits 230 since Dec. 31

Saleema Noon with a group of pre-teens before COVID-19. (Twitter)
Sexual health ‘master class’ for pre-teens offered online

‘The pressure is just so huge, even in Grade 5.’

Most Read