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Interfor workers in the Sault agree to deal with 27.6% wage hike over five years


In Sault Ste. Marie over the weekend, 100 members of Unifor Local 1359 voted 80 per cent in favour of a new five-year collective agreement with Interfor, covering its I-Joist mill.

Interfor is an international forest products company with operations across North America. In the Sault, it was formally known as EACOM. Interfor purchased EACOM in February.

Union officials said workers are satisfied with the new agreement.

“As indicated by the strong ratification result, our Sault Ste. Marie members were very pleased with the solid gains secured in this new collective agreement,” Stephen Boon, Unifor national representative, said in a news release Monday.

“This deal provides long-term stability for Interfor while providing our members with some of the largest monetary increases in the forestry sector in several decades."

Mary Casola, Unifor Local 1359 vice-president, said the deal will help members cope with rising costs.

“This new deal clearly achieved our objectives for bargaining and most importantly, it provides much improved contract language and major monetary gains that will help address the high cost of inflation impacting our members,” Casola said.

And Cathy Humalamaki, Local 1359 president, praised the work of the bargaining team.

“I wish all the best to our members and their families for the upcoming Holiday season and I am sure the many gains achieved in this new deal will contribute to an even more festive celebration for our forestry members as we enter 2023," Humalamaki said.

The new contract is retroactive to May 16, 2022 and remains in place until May 15, 2027. Terms of the deal include up to 27.6 per cent increase in top production wages over the term of contract and up to 26.4 per cent increase in licensed millwright wages with top trades pay reaching $48.90 in the final year of deal. Top Stories

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