Border workers start job action as contract negotiations continue: union

Border workers start job action as contract negotiations continue: union

The union representing Canadian Border Service Agency workers says some job action has begun as bargaining with the government continues.

The Public Service Alliance of Canada and its Customs and Immigration Union says its members are working to rule, but didn’t immediately  specify what that involves.

It says the bargaining team is being given more time to negotiate after overnight talks.

The union says it has been bargaining with the government since 2018 and it served a strike notice on Tuesday.

The dispute comes as Canada is preparing to allow fully vaccinated Americans to visit without having to quarantine starting Aug. 9.

Borders will open to travellers from other countries with the required doses of a COVID-19 shot on Sept. 7.

Ninety per cent of front-line border workers have been identified as essential so they will continue to offer services if there is a strike, the CBSA says.

The union had said members would begin a “sweeping” series of actions at Canadian airports, land borders, commercial shipping ports, postal facilities and headquarters locations if a contract hadn’t been reached by early this morning

The Treasury Board of Canada said a mediator was appointed by the federal relations body and mediations had been ongoing since Wednesday evening.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau weighed in on the issue Thursday, touting the government’s record on resolving labour negotiations.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 6, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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