ST JOHN’S – The union representing workers at Scotia Recycling has filed two complaints against the company with the province’s Labour Relations Board.
CUPE National Representative Bob Matthews says, “Our lawyer has filed an ‘unfair labour practice’ complaint, as well as one of ‘bargaining in bad faith’.
Says Matthews, “This is a large, profitable, multinational company that, up until now, has gotten away with paying its employees low wages and providing no benefits. These workers joined a union to put an end to that.
“Our attempts to find a negotiated settlement in this dispute have been frustrated by an employer who seems unwilling to acknowledge this change in operations. Their employees are no longer prepared to be treated like second-class citizens,” he says.
Matthews says, “The Labour Board complaints stem from correspondence by the employer directly to the employees on matters that should properly be dealt with at the bargaining table. This is in direct violation of our province’s labour laws. CUPE is the bargaining agent and they must communicate with us during bargaining – not their employees.”
“We put them on notice on Monday, March 27th that if we didn’t have an agreement by March 29th, the union would be applying for conciliation. In a bit of a stunt, they decided to jump the gun on us and applied first, to make it look like they were concerned about getting a collective agreement for their workers.”
Says Matthews, “If their behaviour at the bargaining table is any indication, getting a new contract in place is the last thing they want to see happen. These workers deserve a fair and reasonable contract”
Local 1860 has been attempting to negotiate a first contract for 40 employees who work for the private company in recycling facilities across the island.
Bob Matthews, CUPE National Rep., 753-0732 (o)
John McCracken, CUPE Communications Rep., (902) 455-4180 (o)