HBC warehouse workers ratify contract, strike ends

by Inside Logistics Online Staff

E-commerce warehouse workers at HBC Logistics have voted overwhelming at 80 percent to accept a new tentative agreement, ending a nine-day strike action.

“These workers stood firm with the full weight of Unifor behind them to successfully fight for retroactive pay to cover the time that they worked during the pandemic without a contract,” said Unifor Ontario regional director Naureen Rizvi.

The more than 330 warehouse workers, members of Unifor Local 40, process online orders from across the country for The Bay at the HBC Logistics e-commerce facility in Scarborough, Ontario.

“The bargaining committee would never have been able to achieve what we achieved if not for the solidarity demonstrated on the picket line from these members,” said Unifor Local 40 vice-president Dwayne Gunness.

The new three-year contract contains wage increases each year for a total increase of 13.3 percent over the lifetime of the agreement in addition to up to $1,500 in retro pay per worker.

“As workplaces return to pre-pandemic conditions workers across warehousing and other sectors are re-evaluating, and in many cases, such as the HBC Logistics workers, are justifiably demanding more,” said Len Poirier, Unifor’s assistant to the national president .

The agreement also maintains the employee benefit contribution at 2017 rate, and adds new language to guarantee right to participate in discussions on new technology.