SUDBURY, Ontario Members of the Sudbury Mine, Mill and Smelter Workers Union Local 598 voted last weekend 93.5% in favour of ratifying a new three-year collective agreement with FALCONBRIDGE. At midnight on Jan. 31, 1,050 workers began a strike after two months of unproductive negotiations with their employer.
The new agreement will be in force until Jan. 31, 2007. It includes seven key points:
1)language was clarified concerning the company’s use of contractors on capital projects;
2)wages will rise $0.40/hour in the first year plus the cost of living in the next two;
3)pensions were improved slightly;
4)the union will work co-operatively with the company to control production costs;
5)both sides will meet periodically to discuss business challenges, contracting out and business opportunities;
6)provision was made for a $1,000 ramp-up bonus as production resumes; and
7)workers will receive a settlement bonus of $2,000.
Normal production should be resumed over the next two weeks. The company’s web site is at www.falconbridge.com.