Settlement at Springhill Farms
No concessions or closure, workers get wage increase instead
Workers at Springhill Farms in Neepawa, Manitoba have successfully stared down their employer's demands for concessions and threats that they would all be fired if they went out on strike. UFCW Local 832 reports that the workers have voted to accept a settlement that includes a $750 signing bonus and a wage increase of 20 cents per hour in the second year of a two-year collective agreement. The new contract will also include increases in meal allowances and footwear, a 6% hike in company contributions to the pension plan and the creation of an apprenticeship program.
The company's final offer, which was soundly rejected by the workers earlier this month, called for a 7-year agreement with a wage rollback of $1.00 per hour in the first year and wage increases of 20 cents per hour in the remaining 6 years.
The settlement is cause for celebration. According to Local 832:
This is one of the first settlements in the packing house industry in many years where there have been no concessions, no rollbacks. This contract contains improvements in wages, benefits and contract language.