Unifor employees locked out at Pacific Coach Lines

Employees’ severance a major issues between parties

The British Columbia-based shuttle company Pacific Coach Lines (PCL) has locked out employees represented by Unifor.

Unifor Local 114 represents 77 PCL employees, including drivers, mechanics, service staff and ticketing agents.

PCL lost its contract performing cross-water bus service with BC Ferries in 2015. Approximately 70 per cent of PCL’s workforce was laid off following the loss of the contract, according to Unifor.

The union says PCL is locking out its members rather than complete good faith bargaining involving a fair severance package.

Last year Unifor members voted in favour of job action but the parties continued to bargain and no picket line was set up.

A major issue between the parties is the employees’ severance package, according to the union. Unifor Local 114 has one grievance at arbitration with two more to follow concerning the issue of severance.

The lockout is an unnecessary escalation, the union said.

“PCL thinks it can dodge responsibility to pay severance to employees, some of them 20-year veterans who served the company with pride,” said Unifor national representative Mario Santos.

“PCL cannot escape their legal obligations under the collective agreement.”

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