End of the Lock-Out at Petro-Canada The 260 employees at the East-end Montreal Petro-Canada refinery locked-out since November 17, 2007 have ratified the new contract.


Workers at the Montreal Petro Canada refinery have voted 94.6% to accept a new collective agreement to end a 13 month lockout fought over the future of national pattern bargaining in Canada’s oil, gas and petrochemical industries.

“This epic struggle has preserved and strengthened national bargaining for energy workers across Canada,” said Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union national president Dave Coles after the votes were counted in Montreal this evening.

“This is a fair settlement that is fully consistent with the CEP national pattern, including full retroactivity,” said CEP National Energy Bargaining Program coordinator Joseph Gargiso. The 3 year agreement includes wage increases of 5%, 4.5% and 4.5%, a $4,000 bonus, vacation benefits averaging $6,000 per worker for 2008 and $3,800 per employee profit sharing for 2007. Back to work provisions provide for the dropping of all charges arising from the dispute and a full return to work on January 12.

CEP President Dave Coles said the Petro Canada dispute was a watershed in Canadian labour solidarity that included financial support and a national boycott campaign against the oil company. The Canadian Labour Congress and the Fédération des travailleurs et travailleuses du Québec (FTQ) supported a boycott campaign and made it a real success. We also had international support from energy unions around the globe organized by our international federation, ICEM. There is no doubt that this outcome owes much to this watershed of labour solidarity that was organized in support of Local 175.”

Link – Letter from Ken Georgetti, CLC President