Why Do CFC Seine Fishermen have a Collective Agreement?
In 2018, Seine Fishermen fishing for Canadian Fishing Company (CFC) decided that prices paid by the company were too low, CFC no longer wanted to pay into the Benefit Fund, ITQ costs were being charged to fishermen and shares were uncertain and different between boats.
They decided they wanted to bargain a Contract and joined the UFAWU-Unifor - for the purpose of collective bargaining for a Contract to cover salmon prices, benefits, quota costs and shares.
To do this, a majority of CFC salmon seine fishermen signed UFAWU-Unifor membership cards and the Union applied for certification at the BC Labour Relations Board.
CFC put in an objection, which was denied by the Labour Relations Board, and in 2019 the Board certified UFAWU-Unifor as the Collective Bargaining Agent for CFC salmon seine fishermen..
A certification means that the fishermen covered by the certification are represented by the Union and, by law, the company must negotiate with them.
Collective bargaining does not mean that everything fishermen want is achieved right away. CFC Seine fishermen won a Contract in 2019 and every year since then their Agreement is stronger. Even bargained prices will go up and down with the markets, but the Salmon Seine Agreement has Benefit Fund coverage, Share guarantees for Company boats, and quota charge controls as well as guaranteed minimum prices.
Any agreement negotiated by the UFAWU-Unifor must be voted on by the fishermen affected. This is a democratic process.
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CFC-Salmon Seine Fishermen UFAWU Collective Agreement 2024