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Steelworkers, CONIFER reach tentative deal

Interior forest workers have reached a tentative agreement with forest companies.

The agreement, between USW Local-2017 and CONIFER, was reached February 13 during negotiations in Prince George.

The proposed five-year agreement provides wage increases of two per cent in each of the first four years and 2.5 per cent in the last year. The two per cent increase for 2018 is retroactive to July 1, 2018, according to a notice issued by the union.

There will be a $500 lump sum payment upon ratification and further $500 on July 1, 2020 to all active regular employees.

Shift differential premiums will increase from 31 cents to 40 cents per hour. This is the first shift differential increase since 1981.

“The bargaining committee was able to fend off disappointing concessions present by the employer during this round of bargaining by the strong will of our membership with a strong strike vote and rotating job action,” says the union statement. “However, the probationary period for new employees hired after ratification will go to 60 days/six months from the present 30 working days in 90. Eligible benefits, such as medical, and insurance will begin as they have in the past, 30 after 90.”

The bargaining committee is recommending acceptance of the proposed agreement.




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