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150 Walmart Workers Gain Union Contract

150 UFCW Canada Local 500 members in Gatineau, QC, have become the third group of Walmart Canada associates to gain the benefits of a union contract. The new collective agreement comes after several years of efforts, including a lengthy mediation and binding arbitration process.

"It's been a very long, hard fight for the Gatineau workers," says UFCW Canada National President Wayne Hanley. "But through their perseverance they've become the newest group of Associates to prove that workers can challenge the largest corporation in the world - and win."

Following a similar settlement currently in place at the Walmart main store in Saint-Hyacinthe - which is serviced by UFCW Canada Local 501 - the new contract awards the unionized Associates annual wage increases, benefit enhancements, seniority protection, and an impartial and binding grievance procedure.

"We are very pleased to welcome the Gatineau Walmart workers to the UFCW family," says Louis Bolduc, Executive Assistant to the National President. "A win for Associates is a win for UFCW members and all of Quebec's working families." We need to give Associates who want to join the union our full support because raising the working conditions at Walmart is key to protecting our quality of life and hard-earned living standards."

"A community's well-being should always be the bottom line, so we are calling on the corporation to do the right thing by committing to keep the Gatineau store open," says Brother Hanley.

In 2005, Walmart closed a store in Jonquière, QC, within days of being ordered to binding arbitration by the Quebec Labour Relations Commission. In 2008, the Bentonville-based company also closed a Tire & Lube Express Location in Gatineau, QC, shorty after its employees were awarded a union contract.




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