Industry Update: ILWU Canada Issues 72-Hour Strike Notice to BCMEA
June 29, 2023 – ILWU Canada has recently issued a 72-hour strike notice to the British Columbia Maritime Employers Association (BCMEA) as part of their efforts to renew the expired industry-wide collective agreement from March.
The strike, scheduled to begin at 8 am Pacific Time on July 1, comes after unsuccessful negotiations between the ILWU Canada Bargaining Committee and the BCMEA. The union expressed its disappointment with the lack of progress at the bargaining table, stating that the BCMEA and its member employers have refused to address the main issues, leaving them with no alternative but to move forward with the strike action.
The ILWU and BCMEA are expected to continue their bargaining efforts today. However, with the strike notice already issued, tensions are running high as both parties strive to find a resolution that satisfies the needs of the industry and its workforce.
Responding to the strike notice, the BCMEA released a statement on its website, acknowledging receipt of the notice. They assured that the potential strike action would not disrupt employees responsible for servicing grain vessels. Additionally, they expressed their intention to ensure the servicing of cruise vessels continues as planned.
The ILWU Canada and BCMEA have been engaged in the mediation and conciliation process since March 28. The initiation of mediation was at the request of the ILWU, indicating their commitment to finding a fair and mutually beneficial solution.
As the industry braces for the possibility of a strike, Trans-Border is closely monitoring the developments and hoping for a swift resolution that supports the smooth functioning of the industry.