Statement on Shaw’s Termination of 54 Steelworkers

February 23, 2017 - On November 8, 2016, Shaw Cable suddenly terminated the employment of nearly 200 Field Technicians.

Shaw strategically chose to attack 73 unionized positions; including 54 of our members in Vancouver, Richmond, Surrey and Langley.

These members were laid off in two groups, 30 days apart, to avoid federal law that would have required the company to find a way to keep these members employed.  We recognize that Shaw is able to restructure, however, if that is absolutely necessary, we have seniority rights.  It is our opinion these members were laid off out of seniority, a direct violation of the collective agreement – a collective agreement that Shaw signed and agreed to.

I am extremely disappointed in Shaw’s decision to reduce their workforce at a time when their company is extremely profitable and celebrating inclusion on the 2017 list of Canada’s Top 100 Employers.  In addition to this, it is apparent to us that they cut too deep as they are requesting the remaining members to work overtime and extra shifts.

It’s time for Shaw to do the right thing and bring back our 54.

Our union is committed to fighting Shaw’s attack on our members through the arbitration process.  We will continue to communicate with our members as development occur.

In solidarity

Lee Riggs, USW 1944 National President