VANCOUVER, B.C. — Port Metro Vancouver has come up with a list of measures it is willing to implement, to improve conditions for truckers serving the port.
The measures were in response to eight recommendations submitted by the B.C. Trucking Association. Canada’s busiest port has been disrupted over the past week by members of the United Truckers Association, whose members have been accused of harassing and intimidating other truckers wishing to continue working.
On Sunday, the port said it has video evidence of UTA members stopping and vandalizing a truck on port property. It sought and received an injunction to keep protesting truckers from harassing others who wish to continue working.
“Port Metro Vancouver does not and will never condone illegal conduct such as harassment, uttering threats, property damage and assault by individuals or members of organizations that tacitly or actively encourage such activities,” the port said in a bulletin released Sunday. “The recent issuance of an injunction prohibiting disruptions to port operations will allow those who may have been harassed or intimidated to get back to work as quickly as possible.”
In response to an eight-point proposal submitted by the BCTA, the port said it would:
* Announce a fluidity recovery plan two days in advance of a restart date, and extend operating hours as necessary to ensure a quick return to fluidity once the trucking disruption is resolved;
* Extend gate hours at terminals;
* Launch an extended hours pilot project, which was agreed to by terminal operators and union members Feb. 27. Details will be finalized March 21;
* Conduct full rate audits of all trucking companies licensed through the Port Metro Vancouver Truck Licensing System. The trucking industry will be involved in defining the parameters of the audit program;
* Waive the terminal gate compliance fee when extensive delays are encountered at one or more terminals, causing a ripple effect of missed appointments on any given day;
* Terminal gate efficiency fees will be paid to owner/operators and companies affected by terminal truck processing delays, beginning no later than May 1;
* Terminate the independent operator permits of any O/Os involved in harassment, intimidation, property damage or other disruptive behaviour;
* Lift the independent operator permit moratorium, so that O/Os whove had their licences revoked due to disruptive behaviour can be replaced.
In other developments over the weekend, Unifor’s Vancouver Container Truck Association voted to go on strike this week, potentially adding to the chaos. The association represents about 400 members, who say they’ll walk off the job Wednesday evening.
“Container truckers, like workers across this country, make the economy work,” Jerry Dias, national president of Unifor, said in a release. “They deserve to be compensated fairly for their role in generating wealth, but if workers can’t share in that wealth, we’ll help shut that port down until they get it.”