Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Unions set to consolidate at CityWest under new labour agreement

A new contract which includes union consolidation has
been ratified by workers at Prince Rupert owned CityWest

There will be a change in how future labour negotiations between CityWest and its unionized workforce take place, that after the three unions in place at the Prince Rupert owned and operated communication company have agreed to consolidate into one bargaining group.

The terms of a new labour agreement between CityWest and IBEW were put together in September with the results of those negotiations approved by a ratification vote at the end of that month.

The agreement will cover 60 members in Prince Rupert, Terrace, Kitimat and Smithers ,with the new contract and its new consolidation provision to run until June 30th of 2024.

As part of an information release from today, Robin Nedila, the Assistant Business Manager foe IBEW 213 made note of the work that went into bringing the three collective agreements into one.

"In 2018 we started the difficult task of consolidating three collective agreements into one. Given the technology changes and expansion at CityWest, we felt consolidation was the only solution to ensure labour stability for the future."

Prior to the new agreement, CityWest had operated with three unions representing, cable, telephone and clerical workers, with the new agreement all three elements will now move forward as one unit with IBEW Local 213.

Among those on the Prince Rupet based company's bargaining team were CityWest CEO Chris Marett who co-led the negotiations with Tina Lussier.

Vice President, Customer Service, Bart Kuntz, Vice President Outside Plant, Bill Nicholls, Director of Finance, and Serina Repole, a CityWest Executive Administrative Assistant were also instrumental in helping the company reach the new deal with its workforce.

Calling the new contract a historic event for the communication company, the CityWest CEO outlined what factors were considered as they looked to construct the new approach forward.

“We thought that this would be the best way forward as we expand into new areas and roll out new technologiesIn the last few years we’ve moved from our traditional plants of twisted pair and coax to fibre, and our workforce needed to reflect that. I’d like to thank members of both bargaining parties for their professionalism and dedication throughout the negotiations. ”

The work was assisted by Federal mediator Kathy Petes, who help both CityWest and the IBEW come to towards their final agreement.

In addition to the consolidation question, the terms of the new agreement will see employees continue to receive competitive wages and health care and retirement benefits. No details were released as to what if any changes were made in the wages and benefits packages in place.

Further background on the new arrangement can be found from this information release from CityWest.

For more items of note related to CityWest in the Northwest see our archive page here, a wider overview of labour issues in the region can also be found here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

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