EDMONTON, Alberta–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Sawmill workers at Foothills Forest Products have voted to join the United Steelworkers union (USW) Local 1-207. Foothills Forest Products is located south of Grande Cache, Alta.
“We are excited to welcome 130 workers from the Foothills Forest Products sawmill to our union,” said Pablo Guerra, USW District 3 organizer for Western Canada. “These workers came to us looking for better. For too long, they were left to fight for themselves, and now they will have real representation and the opportunity to get the respect they deserve in their workplace. We look forward to working with them to achieve better working conditions, wages and benefits.”
After a majority of workers signed union cards to join the USW, the Alberta Labour Relations Board ordered a vote by employees. The labour board counted the vote today, February 14, and confirmed a majority of the workers voted in favour of union representation.
“We are all very excited to be joining the Steelworkers after so many years of fighting for ourselves,” said a worker from Foothills Forest Products. “To now have backup and support from such a strong union is going to be great for our workers and our town.”
The next steps for the workers will include electing a bargaining committee and negotiating their first collective agreement with the employer.
The sawmill has a total annual production capacity of up to 120 million board feet of high-quality SPF (Spruce-Pine-Fir) lumber. In 2019, Dunkley Lumber Ltd. acquired Foothills Forest Products.
The USW is the largest private-sector union in North America with more than 225,000 members in Canada and represents 14,000 Canadian forest sector workers.
Workers interested in joining the USW can learn more about the benefits at www.betterworknow.ca.