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Montra006c, Wednesday, August 7, 2002 During a general meeting, Sc0075r employees reacted strongly against Mouvement Desjardins latest position in which it has reduced the package already refused by 99% of the union members. This is simply provocation; Desjardins is laughing at us. Their last package was already ridiculous and now they have the nerve to present us with new offers that are even lower! Mouvement Desjardins is losing face in this labour dispute, demonstrating its even worse than the banks, said Jocelyn Tremblay, president of CUPE local 3812.

After several days of talks between the parties, a new bargaining meeting was held on Monday, during which the union submitted a counter-proposal, hoping to find an acceptable compromise for everyone. After having threatened they would reduce the offer already on the table last week, Desjardins finally responded to the union’s counter proposal by putting its threat into practice, just a few hours before the general meeting was to be held. “Desjardins didn’t even have the decency to inform us of its position; we had to learn the news through the media! If Desjardins wanted to make sure our people are motivated and determined, it has certainly succeeded. In spite of its fine claims of being a different kind of establishment with a human face, close to the common man, Desjardins is acting like a financial shark. The employees who transport Desjardins’ money, that is Quebecer’s money, are so poorly paid that close to 250 of our members earn more with their strike pay than with their usual salary. Is this normal? Is this how Desjardins shows respect for its employees? Desjardins cannot always wriggle out of its responsibilities. It is time that it recovered its sense of values and conducted its business according to its own principles,” stated Jocelyn Tremblay.

During the union meeting, the members discussed their strategy and what they should do next. They want to continue to denounce the attitude of Mouvement Desjardins, Sc0075r’s owner, and this Qub0065c cooperative’s use of strike breakers. At the end of the meeting, the members went to the Kolossal enterprise offices to express their disgust and register their “anti-scab” message. Kolossal is the security company that supplies most of the strike-breakers hired by Desjardins to replace unionized employees.

With close to 100,000 members in Qub0065c, CUPE is active in several sectors of activity including health and social services, education, universities, municipalities, hydroelectricity, urban and air transport, communications, government corporations and public organizations in Qub0065c. It is also the largest FTQ affiliate.