B.C. Interior forest workers reach agreement

4,000 workers will see a 4 per cent wage increase over the next two years
|labour-reporter.com|Last Updated: 04/25/2011

The union representing thousands of Interior forest workers has reached an agreement with the Interior Forest Labour Relations Association (IFLRA).

The United Steelworkers Union (USW) is recommending to its members that they accept this agreement after 10 months of negotiations. The two parties were able to come to an agreement with the assistance of a mediator from the Labour Relations Board.

The union had been without a contract since July 2009. The USW served a 72-hour strike notice to the IFLRA in the week leading up to last week’s agreement.

In the deal, workers will see a two per cent wage increase in each of the final two years of the contract. The group will also see the addition of an Employee and Family Assistance Program, along with a trades rate adjustment for Tradesmen and Power Engineers.

“We fully expected the IFLRA to agree to the pattern agreement model already endorsed by many USW northern interior members employed by some of the same IFLRA member companies with operations in the north,” said USW Wood Council Chair Bob Matters in a press release.

In the coming weeks, 4,000 members of USW Locals 1-405 Cranbrook, 1-417 Kamloops and 1- 423 Kelowna will vote on the agreement, which expires June 30, 2013.

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