About 600 members of the United Steelworkers (USW) union, who work at CP Rail across Canada, ratified a five-year collective agreement April 19.
A tentative agreement was negotiated at the end of February, after which ratification meetings were held with Local 1976 members across the country.
The new contract includes annual wage increases of two per cent in each of the agreement's five years. Additional one per cent increases will be paid in the contract's fourth and fifth years if specific performance indexes are met, said the union.
"This is a good agreement which assures stability for our members for the next five years. It favours wage development over cost of living changes," said Nathalie Lapointe, USW staff representative.
The new contract was negotiated prior to the expiry of the existing collective agreement in December 2017.
"While developing our bargaining proposals, our members insisted that their defined-benefit pension plan be maintained for all. With the ratification of this contract, we have achieved this important goal and ensured the pension plan's viability," said Lapointe.
The agreement improves insurance and benefits coverage and provides increased payments for safety apparel in applicable cases, according to USW.
The 600 Steelworkers at CP Rail work primarily in administrative support, the intermodal department, yard office and customer service positions.
The United Steelworkers/Syndicat des Métallos — affiliated with the Quebec Federation of Labour — is the largest private-sector union in Quebec, with more than 60,000 men and women working in every sector of the economy.
© Copyright Canadian HR Reporter, Thomson Reuters Canada Limited. All rights reserved.