An employee has confirmed that after more than eight months of being locked out, employees at the IG Machine & Fibers plant near Ashcroft have accepted a contract settlement.
After 18 months of negotiations, the workers were served with a lockout notice in early July, 2021. On July 12 the company gave notice that they were locking workers out as of 7 p.m. that day. Since then, six of the 40 employees have found work elsewhere and officially resigned, while many other employees have been contracting out and working on a temporary basis in Northern B.C. and Alberta.
Speaking about the contract, the employee says “It’s not perfect, but it’s fair, and it’s nice to come to a resolution so everyone can come back to work.
”We just hope we can get past this and continue on with the rebuilding.”
Employees now have a two-week period in which they can give notice elsewhere if they have to. The back to work date is April 4, and the employee says he does not know how many people will be returning, but expects there will be many who choose not to return.
The employee wants to thank everyone who has supported the workers in their efforts to get a fair deal. “It was a long haul but we have so many to thank for their support on many fronts.”
The plant near Barnes Lake — where rock is crushed and coloured, then shipped to other divisions to create roofing shingles — has been running at 10 per cent capacity, operated by a handful of non-union staff, since July 2021.