Unifor supports the prioritization of workers’ pensions in Northern Pulp agreement

Unifor supports the prioritization of workers’ pensions in Northern Pulp agreement
Northern Pulp mill in Pictou, N.S.

Unifor welcomes news that fully funding the workers’ pension plan is part of the agreement reached between the Province of Nova Scotia and Paper Excellence, the parent company of the Northern Pulp mill in Pictou, N.S.

“Unifor members of Local 440 at Northern Pulp have endured uncertainty over their future and their retirement funds for years now, and it’s imperative both parties to the agreement offer the basic respect to retirees and former employees by fully funding the pension plan,” said Unifor Atlantic Regional Director Jennifer Murray. “Hearing Premier Houston speak of the workers’ pension funding being personally important to him gives us confidence the pension will be a priority.”

The union will watch closely as the company conducts its feasibility study on the relocation of the pulp mill to another location in Nova Scotia.

“The possibility of bringing back some good union jobs in the forestry sector to rural Nova Scotia is encouraging but likely years away. It is promising to see the company and government working toward a solution for the mill site and the Nova Scotia forestry sector, as we urged over many years. Meaningful collaboration that respects all stakeholders is the only way we make progress,” said Murray. “Our current focus is to make sure the retirees and former workers of Northern Pulp are made financially whole.”

Unifor represented 220 members at Northern Pulp, prior to its shutdown in January 2020. Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector and represents 320,000 workers in every major area of the economy, including 22,100 in the forestry sector. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad, and strives to create progressive change for a better future.

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