Montreal Dock Workers Return After Trudeau Orders Strike’s End
(Bloomberg) -- Longshoremen at Canada’s Port of Montreal are back at work after lawmakers passed legislation to end a strike that added to shipping delays.
The Montreal Port Authority said full operations have resumed as of Saturday. Under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s order, a new collective agreement will be established between the workers and the employers, and work stoppages will no longer be possible, it added.
“This new turning point lets the Port of Montreal regain stability and the capability to fulfill its strategic role as a public service without long-term interruptions,” said Chief Executive Officer Martin Imbleau. “Our priority now is to plan for the resumption of port operations and to ensure efficient and seamless service.”
The strike, which began on April 26, affected cargo handling in the container and dry bulk sectors. The port warned customers to expect delays in the coming weeks.
The workers called the legislation “unconstitutional” on Friday. “Prime Minister Trudeau just sent a loud and clear message to every employer in the country: don’t bother bargaining in good faith with your workers, because if things get tough, we’ll be there to bail you out,” said Canadian Union of Public Employees President Mark Hancock.
An average of C$275 million ($224 million) worth of goods pass through the docks of eastern Canada’s biggest port every day, according to the port authority. It feeds into the country’s most populated regions and handled 1.6 million containers holding 35 million metric tons of goods and commodities last year.
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