Windsor Salt Workers Ratify Deal

It's strike avereted at Windsor Salt after all three union units voted in favour of a three-year deal.

The contract includes 2% wage increases every year on top of pension and health benefit improvements. There are also 15 to 20 new jobs that are expected to be added within the next six months.

The union was in strike position as of Friday morning, but Unifor Local 1959 membership at the Ojibway mine voted 75% in favour and its evaporation plant workers voted 76% in favour while Unifor Local 240 office workers voted 90% in favour.

There were some concerns over the "grow in" period for new hires, but Unifor Local 1959 president Bill Wark says a lot of ground was covered in the deal.

"This is a good deal," says Wark. "We've made improvements in pension, benefits, wages, retiree benefits. We've covered the gamut from A, B, C and D in addition to the new hiring provisions at the units."

Wark says really the only point of contention involved the compressed rate for new hires.

"There was an actual concern about the grown-in rate for new hires, but the  reality is, unfortunately for one reason or another, it's happening in the area and it's something that we have to deal with," says Wark.

Over 250 people work at Windsor Salt including about 190 people at the mine. The deal is retroactively effective to February 15, 2017.