Last month, Saskatoon City Council voted to impose changes to transit workers’ pensions, rather than to negotiate changes in good faith at the bargaining table. The forced changes were opposed by the union (Amalgamated Transit Union Local 615) and, as a result, transit workers were locked out and city transit shut down on September 20.
Workplace pensions are critical to a secure retirement. Since three out of every five workers in Canada lack a pension plan at work, we should be looking at ways to improve the system and protect more workers, rather than whittling away at the existing plans.
We encouraged PSAC members to join the transit workers on the picket line to show support for the workers and the universal fight to protect pensions and improve retirement security for all Canadians.
On September 29, Barry Stolar, USGE RVP in Saskatchewan, visited the picket line (pictured below). On October 6, 28 Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) workers from Edmonton made the six hour trip by coach to walk the picket line with their Saskatoon counterparts for a few hours. Their group was one of several unions including the Canadian Union of Public Employees, Public Service Alliance of Canada, and Saskatchewan Federation of Labour (SFL). Nancy Johnson, Women’s Committees Representative on PSAC’s Prairie Region Council was in attendance (pictured below).