Teamsters Canada, the national branch of the extremely strong Teamsters Union, has announced a boost in strike pay for its members.
Union president Robert Bouvier said the weekly pay for striking teamsters would be increased by 50 per cent, from $200 to $300 per week. That gives Teamsters Canada the highest strike pay rates of any union in the country.
“Our organization is very sound financially because we manage our union dues responsibly,” Bouvier said. “We have $50 million in our strike fund to cover members affected by a labour conflict.”
The union represents some 125,000 Canadian tradespeople in a variety of areas, including a large construction contingent. Teamsters Canada is part of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, which boasts some 1.4 million members across North America.
The overall benefits for striking workers will vary depending on the employment status of each individual member, but the union said most will stand to benefit from this increase in strike pay.
Bouvier announced the increase at a Teamsters Canada seminar in Toronto on Wednesday, October 31. The seminar, dubbed “Sois Fier/Be Proud”, brought union representatives and local union officers together and was geared toward improving the services the union gives to its massive membership.
“I’m proud of my organization and its members,” Bouvier said. “I’m proud because they drive the economy, they participate actively in their communities and they defend the interests of all Canadians.”
Sois Fier/Be Proud also offered the union an opportunity for many of its representatives to get together to prepare for its 11th Convention, which will be held in Quebec City next June.
“I’m looking forward to meeting our delegates from across the country,” Bouvier said. “We have a lot to discuss and many decisions to make. Together, we’re going to lay the groundwork for our union activities in the years ahead.”