Local 1778 in Vancouver

April 16, 2007 11:02 ET

Local 1778 in Vancouver: Locked-Out Locals Launch Solidarity Fund

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - April 16, 2007) - The leaders of 3 CN Rail Locals locked out by CN today launched the Railworkers Solidarity Fund.

"We are calling on members and other unions who know what it is like to fight against an entrenched employer to support our cause with donations to our Railworkers Solidarity Fund" said Erik Lonne, President of Local 1778 in Vancouver.

"Our guys are out in the cold for all 2800 UTU members and we're asking members to contribute $5 from their daily paycheck, because CN isn't coming back to the table," added Bob McDiarmid, President of Local 701 (Vancouver).

CN representatives met with UTU leadership on Saturday, April 14 for five hours but had nothing to say about improvement to the tentative February 24th settlement that was rejected by 79% of the membership on April 10th. No further talks have been scheduled.

"On April 10th, we set up intermittent and rotating pickets in several communities to support the entire membership who want a better deal" said John Halen, President of Kamloops Local 691. "CN then locked out the members and this self-serving reaction has slowed rail traffic considerably - just out of spite."

Margie Wagenaar, Secretary of Local 701 (Greater Vancouver Terminal) confirmed a special bank account would be opened on Monday. "In addition to the UTU's $50/day strike pay for everyone who pickets, our idea is that members who are locked out would receive a supplement from the Solidarity Fund." She added that they still need to make final arrangements with UTU to ensure accurate tracking of locked out/picketing members so they can receive the supplement.

Lonne called on other national trade unions to support those members who are taking the hit for the benefit of all.

Contact Information

  • UTU Local 1778
    Erik Lonne
    (604) 218-8387