The Northwest Territories government has brought three ferry services in-house over the last five months. It is a clear rejection of privatized services that will benefit workers and citizens in the N.W.T. The Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) has unionized the ferry workers.
The government about-face started after a 14-day strike in October 2005 by ferry workers in Fort Simpson. The strikers and citizens put pressure on the government, who eventually fired the private contractor, Rowe Construction. The other two ferry services are in Fort Providence and Arctic Red River.
“This privatization reversal and return of these services to the public sector means better wages, benefits and job security for PSAC members,” said Jean-François Des Lauriers, the PSAC-North executive vice-president. “Our new members can now go on with their duties of providing quality, reliable public service to the local population who relies heavily on the ferry service in their daily lives.”
(With files from PSAC)