We had two full days of meetings with the company last week. We've also had smaller sub-committee meetings on the company's wish to reorganize work in Editorial, Pre-Press, Electronic Imaging and parts of Advertising. Provincial conciliator Simon Clarke joined us Wed. Dec. 5. Clarke is now in position to request a ministerial no-board order. This is bargaining jargon for the process of setting a legal lockout/strike deadline. We expect this date to be sometime in the second half of January.
Mediator to join talks
We have now agreed to share the costs of asking a highly experienced mediator, George Adams, to help bridge the huge gap between ourselves and the company. Adams, a former judge, will join us for at least one day this month and for at least a full week in early January.
At the table
We have made no significant progress. This is not surprising. Our modest proposals are intact, as is the company's eye-popping agenda.
We have seven more main-table bargaining days set over the next two weeks, right through Dec. 21, plus more of those subcommittee sessions. We're working hard. We've got a very long way to go. Our lockout/strike action committee is making great progress however. More volunteers are welcome. The best way to avoid a dispute is to be ready for one - step up!
Our Starnews Credit Union has posted a very handy guide to what it can do for you during a lockout/strike on its website, www.starnewscu.com. Take a copy to your financial institution and ask for similar help if you are not a credit union member.
Guild Bargaining Committee
Unit Chair: Maureen Dawson
Editorial: Dan Smith and Valerie Hauch (alternate)
Circulation: Steve Gjorkes and Jeff Bodrucky (alternate)
Finance: Cathie Nichols and Dawn Armstrong (alternate)
Advertising: Elizabeth Marzari and Dijana Maderic (alternate)
Thestar.com: Craig Wattie and Tony Camara (alternate)
Pre-Press: Lester Veszlenyi and Lorraine Wohlgemuth (alternate)