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Municipal workers locked out in Happy Valley-Goose Bay

Photo: CUPE Local 2019

Two weeks ago, the Town of Happy Valley-Goose Bay locked out its municipal workers. 

The 43 members of CUPE Local 2019 are fighting to keep their Defined Benefit (DB) pension plan, which their employer is looking to downgrade. In a 96 per cent strike vote, the workers rejected the Town's demand for a two-tiered pension plan, which would have seen all new hires move to a Defined Contribution (DC) plan.

"The 48 members at the local have said look, a defined contribution plan is nothing better than an RRSP and that's an absolute sell-out to the next generation," said President of CUPE Newfoundland and Labrador Wayne Lucas.

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What does the Bill 1 decision mean for Nova Scotia health-care unions?

Photo: flicker/petras_ool

Monday, arbitrator James Dorsey released his decision on Bill 1, the Nova Scotia Bill which will change the labour landscape for Nova Scotia health-care workers.

The explicit meaning of the 196-page decision wasn't immediately clear. However, in the hours after the announcement, all four health-care unions affected expressed their satisfaction with the ruling, which they say resembles the bargaining association model favoured by labour.

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| January 17, 2015

Jobs lost as Xtra folds print edition, goes online only

Photo: Flickr/Lars Lundqvist

The 31st anniversary of Xtra, February 19, 2015, will be the last time it publishes on paper. 

On Wednesday, Canada's only gay and lesbian publisher Pink Triangle Press (PTP) announced that it would be moving to an all digital platform and closing down Xtra, its print publications in Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver.

The iconic weekly produces news for and about the LGBTIQ community. Final issues of Xtra in Vancouver and Ottawa will appear on streets February 12, 2015 and in Toronto on the newspaper's 31st anniversary on February 19, 2015.

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Target Canada ends operations and 17,600 jobs

Photo: flickr/roadside
Target Canada is closing its doors and leaving "an incredible legacy of scorched earth," having delivered two historic blows to Canadian retail workers.

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17,600 workers lose as Target Canada closes its operations

Photo: flickr/roadside pictures

Less than two years after opening, Target Canada has announced its plans to discontinue operations in Canada. 

The company made the announcement Thursday morning, as it filed an application for protection under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Toronto.

"We were unable to find a realistic scenario that would get Target Canada to profitability until at least 2021," said Target Corporation Chairman and CEO Brian Cornell.

Target Canada currently has 133 stores across the country and employs approximately 17,600 people.

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Meet Irene Lanzinger, new President of the BC Federation of Labour

The first woman and first teacher to lead the BC Federation of Labour talks about politics, teaching and next steps for the labour movement.

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Columnists

Public sector contracts: A chance to improve N.S. labour relations, government

Photo: Taber Andrew Bain/flickr

Speaking of what could be the noisiest and most divisive events in Nova Scotia politics this year -- public sector contracts -- would it be too radical to suggest that the various parties rethink their ingrained habits, exercise some self-restraint and attempt to settle matters for the common good of this province?

By various parties, I mean governments, unions and -- let me add another one -- the media. Let me start with my own gang. The morning of New Year's Eve, my coffee almost came up through my nose when I saw the headline across the top of this newspaper: "Public sector under siege."

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Meet Irene Lanzinger, new President of the BC Federation of Labour

Photo: BC Federation of Labour

After a close race for the top seat of B.C.'s half a million-strong union federation, Irene Lanzinger was elected President of the BC Federation of Labour in November, 2014.

Lanzinger is the first woman and the first teacher to assume the position. She began her teaching career in 1978 as a secondary science and math teacher in Abbotsford and was a long-time union activist with the B.C. Teachers' Federation (BCTF).

As president of the BC Federation, Lanzinger says she will carry forward the vision of labour solidarity promoted by her predecessor, Jim Sinclair. She is adamant that the Federation represents both unionized and non-unionized workers in British Columbia. The following interview has been edited and condensed.

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New Year, new lock out in New Westminster

Photo: CUPE 7000

The rail yard employees of Southern Railway (SRY) received an unwelcome New Year's greeting when the company issued a lockout notice to union members from CUPE 7000.

The promised lockout of 126 CUPE members took effect on Monday January 5 with the company shutting the gates at work sites and using hired security guards to forcibly remove workers from the property.

CUPE 7000 members working for SRY include conductors, engineers, brakemen, track men, locomotive repair and maintenance, and others who operate, maintain and service the company's freight trains, as well as supervising the switching between lines.

The former collective agreement expired in March 1, 2014 and the two parties met six times during the summer to try to hammer out an agreement.

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