NL: Marystown plant workers end protest

Paul Herridge
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The Southern Gazette

Former Ocean Choice International fish plant workers in Marystown have decided to seek an adjustment program with the provincial government.

Former employees of OCI's fish plant in Marystown leave a union membership meeting Wednesday afternoon.

[MARYSTOWN, NL] — Former Ocean Choice International (OCI) fish plant workers in Marystown have decided to bring an end to their protest line and seek an adjustment program with the provincial government.

The decision was made during a membership meeting in the community Wednesday afternoon.

Fish, Food and Allied Workers (FFAW) union president Earle McCurdy told the media afterward the former employees deserved better than the treatment they had received from the company over the past six months.

“They’re the victims really of a corporate philosophy that just doesn’t have any regard for the people whose hard work built up the company in the first place.”

McCurdy said the union believes OCI has violated the Labour Standards Act for not giving the workers in Marystown and Port Union proper notice before closing the facility.

He said the union would be requesting a hearing with the Labour Relations Board.

He also said grievances would be filed if the company attempts to process yellowtail flounder or any other species normally processed by the former workers.

McCurdy said the union believes OCI has a responsibility to contribute to any adjustment program.

Allan Moulton, FFAW chair for the Marystown workers, said the protest line would come down for now but insisted it could be put up again quickly if a satisfactory resolution isn’t found.

“We hope they’re not that insensitive to come down here and try to shag with that equipment until they’re prepared to put something in an adjustment program to look after the workers who've been there for the last 40-odd years in that fish plant.”

Organizations: OCI, Allied Workers, Marystown and Port Union

Geographic location: Marystown

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