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VANCOUVER — The BC Maritime Employers Association is urging the Canada Industrial Relations Board to avert a threatened strike by a union of ship and harbour masters.

VANCOUVER — The BC Maritime Employers Association is urging the Canada Industrial Relations Board to avert a threatened strike by a union of ship and harbour masters.

The union said Friday that ILWU Local 514 has filed a strike notice against DP World Canada that will begin at 4:30 p.m. Monday.

It said this happened despite the Canada Industrial Relations Board launching hearings this week to resolve grievances between it and the union.

The association is now calling on the board to declare the union’s proposals and strike action a violation of Canadian labour law.

It is said that the board has scheduled a case review meeting for Sunday morning to address the request.

The employers’ association said that if the board allowed the strike, it would have “no choice” but to take defensive measures in the form of an industry-wide lockout.

The BCMEA said it has officially notified ILWU Local 514 of its intention to expel all union members from the union at 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

“This coast-wide lockout, if necessary, will halt all cargo operations of BCMEA member companies throughout the province, but will not affect cruise operations or disrupt port operations on grain vessels,” the association said in a press release.

It states that the union is calling on ILWU Local 514 to withdraw its strike notice and resolve the dispute before the Canada Industrial Relations Board.

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union said in a statement last month that 99 percent of the nearly 600 dockworkers who voted opposed a “final offer” from the employers’ association.

Frank Morena, president of Local 514, said at the time that DP World Canada informed them in December that the company would unilaterally introduce some automation at its intermodal station at Vancouver’s Centerm port.

The union said there were other unresolved issues, such as improving pensions and certain allowances.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 6, 2024.

The Canadian Press