URGENT ACTION REQUESTED ....
As you know, members of CEP Local 115A and GCIU Local 34M have been on strike for a first contract at Conrad Black's Calgary Herald since November 8, 1999.
After bargaining for more than a year, the company has refused to negotiate even the most fundamental provisions of a collective agreement with the two unions, including basic provisions such as seniority, anti-harassment language, a wage grid, and so on.
There is no question that the Southam/Hollinger empire is taking advantage of weak labour laws in the province of Alberta to try to break our two unions. We don' t intend to let that happen.
CEP Local 115A returns to the bargaining table on Tuesday, February 1, 2000 -- a single day of bargaining scheduled after more than 10 weeks on the picket line.
We are asking our supporters to write letters to Dan Gaynor, President and Publisher of the Calgary Herald, urging the company to bargain in good faith with the intent to reach a fair and honourable settlement with the union. Every letter is important, whether you are writing as a private citizen or on behalf of a union or other organization. Perhaps if Mr. Gaynor receives many hundreds of them, the company will be less willing to discount public censure.
A sample letter follows. We are proposing that it be copied to Hollinger's Chief Operating Officer, F. David Radler and Southam's Chief Operating Officer, Don Babick. Please use this sample letter as a basis for your own letter. We are asking residents of the Alberta to modify the letter to include more local comment -- especially if you live in Calgary. This is a mild letter -- please feel free to change it. Remember, just last week, letters and phone calls caused the Government of Canada to reconsider its plans to bail out billionaire hockey franchises.
Our members need your support. On their behalf, please accept my heartfelt appreciation for letters and other actions taken to date.
We are extremely grateful for as many letters to Gaynor as possible. Please pass on our request to your families, friends and colleagues.
Here are the addresses:
Dan Gaynor, Publisher, Calgary Herald
e-mail - mailto:email@example.com
fax - 403-235-8650
fax by email: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
F. David Radler, Chief Operating Officer, Hollinger Inc.
email - mailto:email@example.com
fax: 604 -732-5564
fax by email: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Don Babick, Chief Operating Officer, Southam Inc.
Thank you for your support.
National Vice-President, Media
Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada
Dan Gaynor, President and Publisher
The Calgary Herald
Dear Mr. Gaynor:
I understand that your company and the union representing journalists and other newsroom workers at the Calgary Herald is returning to the bargaining table on Feb. 1.
I am writing to urge the Calgary Herald to demonstrate that it is a good corporate citizen and to use this opportunity to bargain a fair and honourable collective agreement with your employees.
It is a shame that your employees are compelled to walk a picket line for more than 10 weeks in order to try to achieve a contract with your newspaper. It is rare for journalists to take such an action. This does not speak well of the Herald, your role as publisher of the newspaper, or the Southam/Hollinger chain of newspapers.
It is my understanding that these workers are on strike for very basic provisions of a collective agreement, including a wage grid, anti-harassment language, and seniority rights -- very fundamental provisions that are contained in collective agreements regardless of industry, and clauses that are certainly common in the newspaper industry. To force journalists to strike over these issues smacks of union-busting.
In all democratic countries, employees have the right, if they so choose, to join a union and to bargain collectively. It is a sad commentary on your newspaper, and the Southam/Hollinger chain, that the Calgary Herald does not support these rights.
I urge you to reconsider your position and to take the opportunity to bargain a fair contract with your employees, and end this strike.
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