TWU, USW begin merger process

New merged union to represent 238,000 workers

The 13,000-member Telecommunications Workers Union (TWU) and the United Steelworkers (USW) have commenced merger talks.

"I am pleased that our union's local leaders from across Canada have voted for us to work toward a merger with the USW that will improve the working lives of our members and their families," said TWU national president Lee Riggs.

"There is a real sense of unity in our union today following the vote of our delegates to start merger talks with the USW.”

Both sides are excited about what we they can build together.

"We'll communicate our shared, positive vision for the labour movement: global, outward-looking and focused on concrete action. We are optimistic about the future and we're honoured to work with the TWU," said USW national director Ken Neumann.

Discussions between the two unions aim to yield a tentative merger agreement that will be brought to all TWU members for approval in a democratic referendum vote this fall.

The two unions intend the merger agreement to include strong, mutual commitments in bargaining, education, organizing and legislative action.

"In this merger process, each and every TWU member has a vote. This will build a better union for every member. And with the USW's extensive international network of allies and resources, our newly merged union can become a global leader in the telecommunications sector," Riggs and Neumann said in a joint statement.

TWU has 13,000 members across Canada and USW has 225,000 members.

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