Videotron Issues Lockout Notice After Union Rejects Offer
After 18 rounds of negotiations with Laurentien-area Local SEVL-2815 (Gatineau) and multiple high-level meetings with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), Videotron’s proposals for a new collective agreement have been turned down, explained the telecom on Friday.
In an attempt to resolve the impasse, Videotron presented what it says is a comprehensive offer on October 10, which the union chose not to endorse. The offer was subsequently rejected by union members. The previous agreement expired on August 31, 2021.
Videotron’s proposal included a 14.5% wage increase over a seven-year period, along with lump-sum payments equivalent to 3% of an employee’s salary, totaling a 17.5% increase. When combined with the 4% annual raise that over 70% of employees are eligible for, the total increase would amount to 45.5% over seven years, it explained.
Quebecor-owned Videotron also expressed the need to expand outsourcing efforts, citing 350 unfilled positions at its call centres despite ongoing recruitment initiatives. Videotron has committed to not laying off employees for roles that are outsourced.
Due to the union’s refusal to accept the offer, Videotron management served a lockout notice, effective 5 a.m. on Monday, October 30, impacting 214 employees. The company remains hopeful for a resolution to the dispute and aims to reach an agreement with the union.