REGINA, Sask. – Independent lease operators impacted by the Regina Co-op Refinery labor dispute will receive special payments from Federated Co-operatives Ltd. (FCL).
FCL announced the financial assistance Feb. 19, saying it will provide financial assistance to carriers contracted to the company that have been negatively affected by what it called “Illegal blockades of the Co-op Refinery complex (CRC) and other FCL sites” by the Unifor union members during the ongoing labor dispute.
“We value the perseverance and support of all our independent trucking fleet partners and we recognize how badly Unifor’s illegal blockades hurt them,” said FCL CEO Scott Banda. “Unifor’s illegal actions have negatively affected their individual well-being and that of their families, so we’re doing all we can to help them.”
The payments, according to FCL, will go to around 40 companies, encompassing nearly 160 trucks. Compensation will be approximately 75% of what carriers would normally be paid and will be applied retroactively to lease operators in Regina, Sask., Carseland, Alta., and Winnipeg, Man.
Heather Day, president of C.S. Day Transport, one of the carriers impacted by the blockades, said the last two months have been difficult on small and large independent lease operators.
“The men and women who join the trucking industry, and particularly the fuel transportation sector,” said Day, “are vitally aware of our responsibilities to the public and the essential role we play in maintaining Canadians’ way of life.
“We’re very appreciative that FCL and the CRC recognize the hardships that we have endured during this labor disruption. The lease operators, drivers, and our other staff take immense pride in helping to fuel Western Canada and are wholly committed to ensuring fuel is delivered across the west.”