Members at the Saint John Airport Authority in New Brunswick are cautiously optimistic about progress of their negotiations.
You may recall that negotiations for this team have not gone well. The two sides have met a few times to try and reach a new Collective Agreement. The employer had refused to consider any of the proposals that the union submitted and were asking for concessions. The employer walked away from the table and filed for conciliation in May. The negotiating team decided to withdraw all of their proposals except one – the want of a good quality defined benefits pension plan.
The parties continued to meet in September and October to discuss moving to another pension plan – the CAAT DB Plan. During this time, members demonstrated its support of its bargaining team by getting a strong strike vote and hosting information pickets. This showed the employer that members are serious about their demand for a good quality pension.
The bargaining team was back at the table in mediation October 23 and 24. Information pickets were outside of the location on both days. “After 2 days, we have made some progress but don’t have a deal yet,” said Chris Bussey, Regional Vice-President Atlantic. “We will not be going on strike at this time and are hoping to be back at the table in mid-November.”
A good quality pension plan and wages are still the outstanding issues, but they are moving. We support our Local 60615 members in achieving their collective agreement with the new pension plan. Everyone deserves retirement security. Solidarity.