New Brunswick

Employees locked out at landfill for all of northeastern New Brunswick

Unionized waste treatment and disposal workers at the Red Pine landfill in Allardville have been locked out of the site about 20 kilometres south of Bathurst.

Unionized employees without a contract for 23 months

The Chaleur Regional Service Commission has served a lockout notice to 23 unionized staff. (Chaleur Regional Service Commission/Submitted)

Unionized waste treatment and disposal workers at the Red Pine landfill in Allardville have been locked out of the site about 20 kilometres south of Bathurst.

The Chaleur Regional Service Commission said the lockout involves 23  employees from CUPE Local 4193, including labourers, heavy-duty operators, security guards, an environmental technician and a supervisor.

All garbage from Restigouche, Chaleur, the Acadian Peninsula and Northumberland County regions is disposed of at the landfill site.

The notice of the lockout said it would take effect at 5 p.m. Thursday.

But Serge Plour, president of CUPE Local 4193, said members arrived at work in the morning to find the gates locked and security guards in place to advise them they could not enter.

The commission said the lockout comes after 23 months of negotiations reached an impasse. The unionized staff have  been without a collective agreement since Dec. 31, 2017. 

"Because of the non-reconciliation on elements that we consider of great importance, we unfortunately had no choice but to proceed with the lockout notice," Chaleur commission chair Joseph Noel said in a release. 

Plourde said the commission left the bargaining table after the bargaining team refused to budge on three issues dealing with union leave and how the employer wanted to handle sick time and vacation days. 

He added they are ready to go back to the negotiating table when the employer is ready. 

"We are here to represent the union." 

The commission said the Red Pine landfill site will stay open from Monday to Friday but will be closed on Saturday.  

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