Esquimalt Dockyards Workers finally get Award!

Wednesday February 18, 2009
For Immediate Release
Esquimalt, BC – Members of IAMAW Local Lodge 456 employed at the federal government dockyards have a new forty-six-month collective agreement.
The IAMAW is one of eleven unions representing trades people at the dockyards under a poly-party agreement certified to the Federal Government Dockyard (FGDY) Trades and Labour Council (West). “An agreement was bargained in 2007 that would have seen the tradesmen wages reaching $32.25/hour by October 2008 as well as generous time off provisions and the ability to carry forward up to 35 days of holidays a year,” explained IAMAW District 250 Business Representative Alastair Haythornwaite. “But the membership rejected that agreement by a margin of 89 per cent and since FGDY employees are not allowed to strike, binding arbitration was invoked. It was an expensive and lengthy process that delivered an award with slightly higher wages but without the previously agreed to non-monetary issues.”
The agreement provides for a wage adjustment of 5.25 percent, a wage increase of 2.5 per cent retroactive to 2006, 2.3 per cent retroactive to 2007, 1.5 per cent retroactive to 2008, and .5 per cent for the first nine months of 2009. The agreement ends October1, 2009.
The Federal Government Dockyard is the home of Canada’s Pacific fleet. The 70 members of Local Lodge 456 consist of machinists and fitters working at the base’s machine shop, maintenance shop, instrument shop and weapons shops. Machinists are also part of the team overhauling Canada’s submarine fleet. The machine shop undertakes a wide variety of projects for the Department of National Defence, including armour upgrade kits for vehicles heading to Afghanistan and the manufacturing of aluminum tent poles and pegs for the Army. The maintenance shop is responsible for repair and service to mechanical systems at the Dockyard. The instrument shop services gauges and other precision equipment for the navy and army. The weapons shop repairs and rebuilds the armament of the navy vessels, such as torpedo tubes, 76mm automatic cannon armed turrets and chain guns.