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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Bruce Power, Union Continue Conciliation

Tiverton | by Matt Hermiz  

Union reports little progress in collective bargaining talks.

The union representing 1,200 workers at Bruce Power says little progress has been made in reaching a new collective bargaining agreement with the Tiverton-based energy company.

The Society of United Professionals -- which represents engineers, supervisors and other professional workers at the power plant -- says if a deal cannot be reached in the next two days of conciliation, a no-board report will be issued and trigger a 17-day countdown to a legal strike or lockout position.

Back on June 19, union members voted 97 per cent in favour of a strike mandate.

"We have been working tirelessly to find a way to reach a fair contract for everyone but there has been very little progress on the big issues," says Society of United Professionals Bruce Power local vice president Mike Gade in a statement. "We need the company to get serious about negotiating a deal because there is a lot at stake for every Ontarian if we can't."

Union spokesperson Adam Chaleff says the contracting out of jobs over hiring new full-time employees, a desire for current employees to have better career development opportunities and improving health and safety at the power plant are among the main issues.

Bruce Power says in a statement collective bargaining negotiations are expected to continue next week with the support of a Ministry of Labour conciliator.

"Bruce Power has a long history of positive labour relations and is committed to an open-dialogue and continued engagement to reach a new collective agreement," the statement reads.

According to the union, collective bargaining talks have been ongoing since November 2018. A Ministry of Labour-appointed conciliator has been assisting since June 24, 2019.

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