Montreal, Quebec is Canada’s second-largest and busiest port of entry with approximately $100 billion worth of goods passing through the port each year. Dockworkers there rejected a management bid on March 21, 2021, according to a union official, raising industry concerns of a new strike after debilitating work stoppages in 2020.
After Local 375 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees walked off the job site on August 10, 2020, they agreed then to go on strike indefinitely. The strike is part of a broader conflict that started in 2018, when the union and management refused to reach an agreement on a new contract. The strike lasted for 11 days. Longshore and repair workers are expected to work 19 days in a row before taking two days off, so the strike in 2020 was mainly about shift work and work-life balance.
According to reports, there are two factors involved in settling this strike.
- Job schedules/time off are still the big issue in the negotiations, according to CUPE.
- With an influx of Asian cargo into Canada, the lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) is a crucial issue for workers.
The Port of Montreal is vital to the economy, which is of great concern to the businesses that depend on it.
This article will be followed up on by The Scuba News Canada.