Viterra and Local Unions set to resume talks in new year

Members of Grain and General Services Union Local 1, which represents workers from Viterra Country Operations and Maintenance and Local 2, which represents workers from Viterra’s Regina Head Office, say they are taking a stand to secure fair wages, improved work-life balance, and workplace respect in their collective agreements.

After the pair of unions rejected Viterra’s final offer on December 15th, the union’s bargaining committee reached out to Viterra, with both sides set to resume negotiations in the new year on January 3rd and 4th, providing another opportunity for both sides to reach an agreement.

It was on December 15th that both unions voted to authorize strike action should it become necessary.

“Concern for our prairie farmers and agriculture should not just be as a result of a strike or lockout; it should also consider the impacts of the Bunge Viterra merger,” said GSU general secretary Steve Torgerson. “Any reduction in competition in grain handling will have real, significant impacts on producers for years to come.”

“We’re asking everyone to consider which could have a more significant impact on our rural communities: a labour dispute strike advocating for fair treatment and compensation for agricultural employees or a merger that involves a multinational agriculture company being absorbed by an even larger agricultural entity.”

GSU said that they remain vigilant and concerned about the potential consequences of decreased competition within the agriculture business, advocating for fair and open markets that benefit all stakeholders.

“We invite all interested parties to approach the upcoming negotiations with a commitment to embracing diverse perspectives. GSU Locals 1 and 2 are unwavering in their dedication to achieving a collective agreement that addresses their members’ immediate needs and contributes to fostering a robust and vibrant province.”

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