Workers at three East Coast Credit Union branches could be in legal strike position Friday.
44 full and part-time credit union workers in Antigonish, St. Andrews and New Glasgow voted 98 per cent in favour of strike action to fight proposed pension plan changes in July.
Those three branches used to be Bergengren Credit Unions before a merger that became official in Jan. 2016.
Ken Shea, the president and CEO of East Coast Credit Union, tells The Hawk he hopes they can avoid a work stoppage.
“We’ve put forward what we think is a reasonable approach to this, and we would hope that we can come to some resolve with the union,” he says. (I’m) a little disappointed that they’ve come out publicly ahead of us, and ahead of our final decision on whether we’re going to have some labour action or not.”
Shea says the ball is in the court of union members at this point.
Jeanne Doiron, the unit chair for Unifor Local 2107, says they don’t want to disrupt their customers, but they believe in fighting for fairness.
“We feel like we’ve done our part, and we’ll continue to do our part if it was for financial reasons, but given the fact that the employer has told us that it’s in good financial shape and this is more a matter of principle, there’s really no need at this point to close out this plan,” she says. “That’s the union’s position on it.”
Reps for both sides will return to the bargaining table for another round of conciliation talks Wednesday.
The employer could also be in legal lockout position Friday.