FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Thursday, Jan. 18th, 2018
The Federation of Independent Sea Harvesters of Newfoundland and Labrador (FISH-NL) says Unifor's reasoning for its break from the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) is nothing short of ironic and hypocritical.
“Unifor, the largest private-sector union in Canada, is splitting from the CLC over a disagreement about the rights of workers to choose what union should represent them, while one of its affiliate unions, the FFAW, has blocked the province's inshore harvesters for 13 months from voting on their union fate,” says Ryan Cleary, President of FISH-NL.
“It’s clear solidarity isn’t forever with the FFAW/Unifor so much as when it suits them. They have forgotten where they come from and who they stand for.”
Unifor President Jerry Dias announced Wednesday Unifor’s immediate split from the Canadian Labour Congress, the national lobby group for the labour movement. The decision was made by the union executive — not rank-and-file members.
Unifor is in a months-long battle to represent more than 10,000 transit workers in Ontario, who are already represented by the U.S.-based Amalgamated Transit Union. Uniform charged the CLC wasn’t supportive enough of its raiding efforts.
It’s been 13 months since FISH-NL submitted its certification application to NL’s Labour Relations Board to represent the province’s inshore harvesters, breaking them away from the FFAW-Unifor.
FISH-NL submitted 2,372 membership cards with its application, but the Labour Relations Board has yet to determine the total number of bonafide harvesters to decide whether there’s enough support (40 per cent) to force a vote.
"The FFAW/Unifor’s double-dealing standards with FISH-NL and the CLC are sinking their credibility even lower," said Cleary.