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MPI Finally Admits Wage Offer is 2% Per Year
The MGEU Bargaining Committee representing over 1,700 MPI members has requested the Corporation agree to resume negotiations and bring in a conciliator to help bargain a new contract.
MPI workers have been on strike since August 28 to reach a deal that provides ALL members with a general wage increase that allows workers to catch up and keep up with the soaring cost of living.
Since the strike began, MPI and the government have made aggressive and misleading statements about their offer to members, with claims that have grossly inflated their actual offer by including non-wage items, one-time payments, and other increases that flow only to some members.
The reality is that the Corporation’s offer provides just a 2% per year general wage increase (or 8% in total over four years) and MPI spokesperson Ward Keith finally admitted the truth about the offer in the media this week.
While MGEU President, Kyle Ross, said it’s refreshing to hear MPI finally tell the truth about their wage offer, he said it’s unfortunate that the Corporation also made a false claim that MGEU’s Bargaining Committee is refusing to return to the bargaining table unless its wage demands are met.
“Sadly, they misrepresented MGEU’s position on returning to the bargaining table. We have repeatedly said we want to resume negotiations, and today, we have formally requested that MPI come back to the table with the assistance of a conciliator,” said Ross.
“The MBLL strike was eventually resolved through good, old-fashioned negotiations and the assistance of a conciliator. You can’t find a resolution if you aren’t even talking. So, let’s roll up our sleeves and bargain a fair deal.”
Strangely, after more than 24 hours, MPI had not yet responded to the MGEU's request to return to the bargaining table with a conciliator. The Corporation only responded to the conciliation proposal after MGEU sent a second letter to MPI threatening to ask the Manitoba Labour Board to appoint a conciliator under section 67(1) of the Labour Relations Act.
Conciliation preferred by Bargaining Committee at this time
A conciliation officer is a labour relations professional that works with both parties to reach a resolution at the bargaining table.
Ross said that conciliation is the preferred approach for the MPI Bargaining Committee at this point because it’s the option that’s most likely to produce a negotiated settlement, agreed to by both sides, as opposed to a settlement being imposed by an arbitrator.
He added that a negotiated contract is endorsed by both the union and the employer, and most importantly, all members get to vote on it. Members have no vote when a contract is settled by arbitration.
It is also important to note that a negotiated contract can be voted on and implemented very quickly, while arbitration usually takes more than a year to resolve.
MPI Local 62-68 members should go to the Latest Bargaining News for the most recent bargaining updates emailed to members and details about picketing.
Related News Stories:
August 28, 2023 - MPI Members On Strike
August 24, 2023 - Strike Date Set for MPI Workers
August 18, 2023 - MPI members vote overwhelmingly in favour of strike action