23 January, 2020
For immediate release
Nanaimo, BC – After 41 days of picketing against Subaru Nanaimo, members of IAM Local Lodge 456 saw some success on the picket line. Faced with an employer who seems determined not to bargain with our members, they took the bull by the horns – and threw it to the ground!
“We noticed that the Subaru dealership in Nanaimo was preparing for a big customer event in preparation for the Chinese New Year” said John Humphrey, Business Representative with IAM District 250. “The date was auspicious to the East Asian community who follow the lunar new year, which is why there was a special event planned by the dealership unveiling their new Subaru Outback and Legacy models.”
Humphrey, Andrew Tricker, also a Business Representative with IAM DL250 and Walter Gerlach, Directing Business Representative for the District, all got on their phones and called people in the labour movement to show up and help them on the picket line.
Member and staff from the BC Ferry Workers, the British Columbia Government and General Employees’ Union, Health Sciences Association, Professional Employees Association, Canadian Union of Public Employees, as well as other IAM members showed up in force and managed to make enough of a spectacle that the “special event” turned out to be a dismal failure.
The BC Federation of Labour helped greatly by putting out the call on their website.
“While the strike doesn’t look like it’s going to be settled, especially since the employer is using scabs, and heaped verbal abuse on the picketers” said Humphrey, “we feel like the disruption was a success. You don’t mess with the IAM,” he concluded.
Members at Subaru Nanaimo, Mercedes-Benz Nanaimo and Three Point Motors, a Mercedes-Benz dealership in Victoria, has been represented by the IAM for more than thirty years. IAM Local 456 was chartered by the IAM in 1901 and has represented workers on Vancouver Island since that time.
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