Unifor Local 594 rejects Co-op’s latest offer, calling it ‘disgusting’

The labour dispute between Unifor Local 594 and Co-op Refinery Complex (CRC) continues as the two parties have been unable to strike a deal despite the help of special mediators.

On Sunday, Co-op rejected the recommendations of special mediators Amanda Rogers and Vince Ready and sent their own offer to Unifor on Wednesday. Describing it as “disgusting,” Unifor rejected the proposed deal.

“The company submitted an offer to the bargaining committee that was disrespectful to their workers, the special mediators, the government and the people of the great province of Saskatchewan,” Unifor said in a press release.

Labour dispute continues after Co-op Refinery rejects special mediator’s recommendations

Unifor members had voted “almost unanimously” in favour of the deal laid out by the provincially appointed mediators, which was ratified on March 23.

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For months, Unifor has questioned CRC’s willingness to get a deal done.

“We came to the table asking for very little and offered the company millions of dollars in savings. FCL has never wanted a deal. Every step of the way they moved the goalposts and demanded more and more from workers,” Unifor said.

CRC said the recommendations made by the mediators are “helpful” but still chose to reject the deal.

Unifor accepts recommendations from mediator in Co-op lockout

“Global economic circumstances have changed, and with that, we have seen a drastic decline in the consumer consumption of fuel and rapidly declining oil prices that have put the CRC in a more difficult financial position than when negotiations began,” CRC said in a press release issued on the weekend.

In response, Unifor said the CRC is using the COVID-19 pandemic “as leverage to demand more concessions from workers.”

CRC posted the comparisons between the mediators’ recommendations and its new proposal on Twitter.

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The mediators’ full proposal can be viewed below.

CRC locked out Unifor Local 594 members on Dec. 5, 2019.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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