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            october 23, 2019

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British Columbia's port workers and employers ratify new contract


The board of directors of the British Columbia Maritime Employers Association (BCMEA) have ratified a new five-year collective agreement with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada.
The ratification follows last Friday's ILWU Canada members' vote to endorse the contract, which was negotiated on May 30 after an all-night bargaining session and hours after an employer lockout began. The union said 77.18 per cent of those voting were in favour of ratifying the contract.
The new contract replaces an eight-year agreement that had expired on March 31, 2018. The 6,500 ILWU members, including those in the major container ports of Vancouver and Prince Rupert, had been working without a contract for more than a year.
BCMEA board chairman, Jeff Scott said in a press release: "Through a collaborative effort, and with both sides having worked hard to reach a tentative collective agreement on May 30, 2019, we have now ratified that agreement and are looking forward to next steps in our working relationship and to continue to bring stability to the West Coast of Canada for the next five years."
The press release said with this contract ratified, BCMEA will be "reaching out" to the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services to resume bargaining with Local 514 Ship and Dock Foremen, reports American Shipper.

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