Workers at Heritage Credit Union and HG Insurance in Castlegar and Slocan Park are in a legal strike position after issuing 72 hour strike notice on Friday. However, the employer has applied for and been granted a Last Offer Vote under the BC Labour Code which means workers will have to delay any possible strike action. Employer’s have the ability to apply for such a vote only once during any set of negotiations.
“The membership turned down the employer’s final offer July 18,” said Jeff Bromley, financial secretary for USW Local 1-405 which bargains for the 35 members at the Heritage Credit Union and HG Insurance. “The employer’s ‘last offer’ is to be voted upon by workers on Friday (August 24) at the Heritage Credit Union and HG Insurance in Castlegar and Slocan Park. The two offers are identical and to date, no changes or improvements to the July 18 offer have been made.”
The workers at the two branches will honour the request and will not exercise any job action until after the vote and then will evaluate their next course of action, said Bromley.
“After commencing bargaining in May, it was clear that the unilateral changes to the pension made in 2010 – identified by the membership as the number one issue on the bargaining table from day one – are still a major stumbling block,” he said.