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Results from Local 2251 strike vote (updated)

Strike action authorized at the discretion of Local 2251 leadership
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Mike Da Prat, Feb. 28, 2017
USW Local 2251 President Mike Da Prat, seen during strike mandate vote result announcement on Feb. 28, 2017. David Helwig for SooToday

Essar Steel Algoma's largest union has authorized its leadership to call a strike if they're unable to reach a collective agreement.

Members of United Steelworkers Local 2251 voted all day Tuesday and results were released Tuesday night.

Result of the vote shows 98 per cent of Local 2251 members who voted support a strike mandate. 

The 1,896 ballots cast was an all time high turnout for Local 2251.

1,851 voted yes. 43 voted no. There were two spoiled ballots. 

Strike votes aren't unusual in collective bargaining and don't necessarily mean that a strike must occur.

They are taken by secret ballot and more than 50 per cent of members must vote in favour.

 A strike may consist of:

  • a cessation of work
  • a refusal to work or to continue to work by employees in combination or in concert or in accordance with a common understanding
  • a slowdown or other concerted activity on the part of employees designed to restrict or limit output

If a strike does occur it would be the first for Local 2251 since 1990.

Additional information will be posted by SooToday as it becomes available.

The full text of a release from USW Local 2251 president Mike Da Prat follows.

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On Feb. 23, 2017, the membership of USW Local Union 2251 were presented with a synopsis of what has transpired between the negotiating committee, a bidder and the employer. 

The Membership of United Steelworkers Local Union 2251 voted to give a strike mandate to the negotiating committee from 5 a.m. until 8:30 p.m. today at the Marconi Hall.

The members' have given the negotiating committee a very strong mandate with a 98 per cent yes vote.

The members of Local Union 2251 have repeatedly responded to the company's requests in time of need. By this vote, they have stated emphatically that they are prepared to negotiate a collective agreement that makes sense and is fair to all.     

The members of Local Union 2251 and their bargaining committee are looking for a collective agreement that is fair to all the workers. It is appropriate that the members that have given so much are entitled to a fair collective agreement that provides them a share when the market make the company profitable.

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David Helwig

About the Author: David Helwig

David Helwig's journalism career spans six decades beginning in the 1960s. His work has been recognized with national and international awards.
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