Unifor rejects ‘best’ offer from Regina Co-op

by Today's Trucking

REGINA, Sask. – Unifor has rejected the “best and final offer” from the Co-op Refinery Complex (CRC), the Federative Co-operatives announced last night.

“The CRC will be required to make significant changes to support the transition to a low-carbon economy, and to protect our refinery and jobs long-term. Recent developments in our industry have only accelerated those challenges we have been highlighting since the negotiations began with Unifor Local 594,” said Gil Le Dressay, vice-president, refinery operations.

Photo:  Federated Co-operatives Limited.

“It is our hope the union membership will soon understand that the only deal that balances their requirements and also achieves long-term certainty for the CRC is our best and final offer.”

The refinery will continue to be operated by CRC’s management team.

“Members of our management team as well as skilled industry personnel have operated the refinery safely, reliably and efficiently since the dispute began on Dec. 5, 2019, and we’re extremely confident they can continue to do so for an indefinite period of time, if necessary,” said Le Dressay. “The team currently running the facility has met the Western Canadian fuel demand the entire winter and has filled all inventories to ensure market needs will be met. Notably, I can assure Co-op farm fuel customers that the fuel to support their operations for the 2020 season is available and ready to go. The talented women and men currently operating the refinery are among the best and most experienced in our industry, and they are running our equipment exceptionally well.”

Unifor Local 594 says its members have voted 89% against the contract.

“Co-op had every reason to be satisfied with the mediators’ recommendations, but they got greedy,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National president. “Regina’s refinery workers have sent a clear message to Premier (Scott) Moe: impose the mediators’ recommendations and end this dispute.”

More than 700 refinery workers have been locked out of the jobsite since Dec. 5, 2019.

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