Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tentative Deal Averts Strike at B.C. Ports

(CBC News)

About 450 B.C. dock workers have reached a tentative deal with an association representing about 67 port employers, averting a potentially crippling strike at the ports in Vancouver and Prince Rupert.

Local 514 of the International Longshore Warehouse Union reached a tentative agreement Friday with the British Columbia Maritime Employers Association, but the details won’t be released until members on both sides have time to see the deal.

If both sides approve it, the deal would avert a strike that would threaten to halt cargo traffic through B.C. There have been fears that as many as 5,000 other workers involved in port operations would walk off the job to show their support if the union went on strike.

Local 514 workers have been without a contract since March 2007, and had set a strike date of January 2, but continued to work while negotiations were underway.

The main issues on the table were reportedly pension payments and working conditions.