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Steelworkers cap Power Precast unit contract through virtual means

Source: United Steelworkers District 6, Ottawa, Ontario

A bargaining unit at Ottawa-based Power Precast Solutions ratified an agreement that contains what United Steelworkers Local 8327 officials describe as significant wage increases, opportunities for skills training, better winter clothing, improved sick day provisions and control over mandatory overtime. The unit's first contract through the union calls for a minimum 7.5 percent wage increase over three years, with several job classifications receiving special adjustments—the highest equating to a 13.9 percent pay bump. 

A tentative agreement was reached with Power Precast in March. Restrictions due to pandemic response measures, however, necessitated a virtual meeting to review the deal in lieu of a customary face-to-face membership gathering, followed by electronic voting for ratification. The unit comprises 30 team members at a plant specializing in transportation and infrastructure elements.  

“This is a very good agreement reached under trying circumstances,” says USW Ontario Director Marty Warren. “It shows that it’s possible to adjust the way workers’ rights can be maintained, despite restrictions imposed by the pandemic. These workers make components for enormous infrastructure projects that are increasingly important in a changing world.”