Hope that mediation could sort out the differences between the District of Kitimat and Unifor 2300 has been dashed with both sides posting publicly that agreements couldn’t be made.
Don’t hold your breath to know what happened behind those doors during mediation though, the rules of the process forbid either side from disclosing what took place, meaning both the District and the union are mum on the specifics.
Mediation had initially been set for May 1 due to scheduling limits from the mediator but the bargainers were told they could go to Vancouver if they wanted to start it up sooner.
“Over the past weekend negotiating parties worked very hard and spent many hours in mediation. Some progress was made; however, the sides were unable to bridge the gap between language and money,” is the only statement the District of Kitimat says they can release on the matter.
The union also revealed the failure of mediation in a letter posted via their Facebook page.
“Unfortunately it became apparent that instead of moving in a direction that would see the parties resolve the outstanding issues left at the bargaining table we were going in a direction that would see us going backwards, so on the evening of Monday, April 20, 2015 mediation came to an end,” reads the letter posted to social media.
Both sides remained silent as far as further comment when asked by the Sentinel.
Meanwhile the union did say they have an offer from Unifor 2301 in Kitimat to offer essentially one hour of pay per member per month up to two months after a contract gets resolved. 2301 does have to vote on that endorsement at their next meeting.
2300 has also launched an online petition which reads “In the spirit of good faith bargaining I support the Municipal workers and the District of Kitimat bargaining the outstanding items only to reach a fair Collective Agreement.”