Contract talks ‘long and hard,’ Mine Mill says, but members approve contract – by Jim Moodie (Sudbury Star – February 2, 2021)

The leader of a union representing Glencore workers said he was comfortable with the tentative deal reached over the weekend on a new contract, although it would up to the workers to decide.

And they did Monday, voting in favour of the new contract by a 67.8 per cent again. “The bargaining was very long and hard — many long nights,” said Eric Boulay, vice-president and acting president of Mine Mine Local 598/Unifor. “Our committee is confident they reached the most fair agreement that could be reached at this point.”

One of the sticking points in the talks, which went throughout the weekend, was a concession the company wanted regarding benefits, “but we were able to get that off the table,” said Boulay.

The tentative agreement was reached just shy of the midnight deadline on Sunday for the existing contract to expire, and Mine Mill was ready to take job action if the employer didn’t budge on key issues.

“Our labour dispute preparations were well underway and we were ready if it came down to it, but hopefully in that 11th hour we reached a good deal,” said Boulay. “We accepted the offer verbally at 11:45 p.m.”

For the rest of this article: