Winnipeg, MB – A strike began at the Winnipeg Airport Monday morning (July 24, 2017) at 3:00am.
After seven days of negotiations with the assistance of a federally-appointed mediator aimed at resolving all outstanding issues in bargaining between the Winnipeg Airport and its General Bargaining Unit employees, members of UCTE Local 50600 of the PSAC, the employer left the talks at 6:00pm Sunday after tabling an offer which failed to address almost all of those issues.
Four of the seven days of intense bargaining focused on the core issues of Contracting In and Contracting Out of bargaining unit work. On Sunday, the Airport withdrew from any further attempt to resolve these key issues.
"PSAC and its members are disappointed with the Airport’s decision to not address those issues tabled last October, and which remain unresolved tonight”, said Marianne Hladun, PSAC Regional Executive Vice-President, Prairies Region. "PSAC is committed to a successful strike action, if that is what is necessary to ensure that these important workplace issues are resolved and employees work is protected.”
Teresa Eschuk, Regional Vice-President, UCTE Prairies and North, said: “The Winnipeg Airports Authority has failed its employees in this process, both in the way it treats them in the workplace and in the manner in which it has failed so far to negotiate a fair collective agreement with the union’s negotiating team despite bargaining since last October.”
Approximately 150 employees—including duty managers, administrative workers, various tradespersons, IT workers, airfield maintenance, and labourers—are represented by PSAC and the Union of Canadian Transportation Employees (UCTE). The workers have been without a contract since June 30, 2016 and in negotiations since October 2016.
PSAC represents more than 170,000 workers across Canada, including nearly 8,000 in Manitoba and 150 employees at the Winnipeg Airports Authority. UCTE is a component of PSAC, which represents workers in both the public sector—Transport Canada, Canadian Coast Guard, Parks Canada—and private sector—Airports and NAV Canada.