Friday, September 21, 2007

Union probing layoff of Newfoundlanders in Alberta

read full article: St. John's Telegram, Canada
A union representing workers at a major oil sands project in Alberta says it has confirmed that Newfoundlanders were left stranded in Alberta by improper layoffs, but contends the magnitude wasn't as great as first expected.

All the same, Frank Kooger, regional director with the Christian Labour Association of Canada (CLAC) in Fort McMurray, said steps will be taken to resolve what happened.

"What we've been able to identify through our pursuit is there were two gentleman who were laid off or terminated during their probation period, and that they were improperly just given a ticket to Edmonton and let go," said Kooger, who was in St. John's Thursday making media rounds in an attempt to defuse the situation.

He said the company in question had been approached by the union, and the company will be reviewing its layoff record as a result.

"That's improper on the part of the employer," Kooger said of what happened. "(The workers') tickets will be reimbursed."

As first reported by The Telegram, Sept. 13, a group of Newfoundland workers had complained they were unexpectedly laid off due to what they were told was a shortage of work by a contractor at the Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. (CNRL) Horizon oil sands project.

The workers had been on a 20-days-on, eight-days-off schedule that required the company to take care of worker flights between Newfoundland and Alberta.

No comments: