News, Developments and Information

700 Workers Have Voted to Join the United Steelworkers

Jul 22, 2019

700 workers have voted to join the United Steelworkers in the past month in several major successful organizing campaigns in British Columbia and Saskatchewan.
At the Red Chris mine near Dease Lake, British Columbia over 330 workers are joining USW local 1-1937. As Canada’s mining union, the Steelworkers are leading the way to ensure that miners make gains at the bargaining table and have the strongest health and safety protection possible.
“Mining is an incredibly important industry and economic driver of our country. And it’s miners who make it all happen. We’re proud to grow our ranks and will be working with workers at other non-union mines to provide them the opportunity to join the Steelworkers and improve their working lives,” says District 3 Director Stephen Hunt. 

USW Local 2009 has also won certifications at Terrapure Environmental sites in North Vancouver, North Delta and Prince George, B.C. 

Another effort in Kamloops, B.C. was secured by USW Local 1-417. Over 100 workers at Active Care, a community care centre, voted to join the United Steelworkers earlier this month.

Over in Prince George, B.C., 30 workers working at the Northwest Wood Treaters were verified last month and now join USW Local 1-2017.

“These organizing victories speak to the strength that our local unions have. Together, they want to build better working lives for people living and working in their communities. They are helping in growing our diverse union that fights for all workers,” says Hunt.

In Saskatchewan, the USW continues to be the union of choice for taxi workers seeking fair treatment, safe working conditions and a better future.

175 taxi workers at the ride hailing app RIIDE in Saskatoon are the newest members of the Steelworkers. Despite employer attempts to say that RIIDE drivers are not employees, the union was successful in this groundbreaking organizing campaign. They join drivers at Comfort Cabs and United/Blue Line as members of USW Local 2014. 

“As times change and technology changes our working lives, more and more workers find themselves in vulnerable positions where their rights as workers are regularly violated and their work is not respected. The answer to these challenges is to organize, unionize and bargain collectively. USW is leading the way in this area,” Hunt concluded.    

Organization Update

Brothers and Sisters,

As you may or may not know on July 12th a Notice of Layoff was issued for the Steel Division effective July 26th for 111 members. This is sudden and unexpected news and hope to work with the company for as smooth a transition that can be possible.

There has also been a change in Leadership at Evraz. CEO Conrad Winkler is leaving the company later in the summer and Senior V.P of Human Capital, Dario Cruz, will also be leaving the company effective July 17th. As of right now there has been no replacement announced for Mr. Cruz but there has been a replacement for Mr. Winkler and that is Skip Herald.

In Solidarity!!!


The CPI figure for April was released on May 15, 2019. Per the Collective Agreement,
the following calculation will apply:
April 2019 140.6
January 2019 137.4
Difference 3.2
Divide difference by .063 = $0.50
Effective with the first pay period after the release, COLA will be $1.21 per straight-time
hour worked, as it was previously $0.71.

Joint Statement by Canada and the United States on Section 232 Duties on Steel and Aluminum

After extensive discussions on trade in steel and aluminum covered by the action taken pursuant to Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 (19 U.S.C. §1862), the United States and Canada have reached an understanding as follows:

1. The United States and Canada agree to eliminate, no later than two days from the issuance of this statement:

a. All tariffs the United States imposed under Section 232 on imports of aluminum and steel products from Canada; and

b. All tariffs Canada imposed in retaliation for the Section 232 action taken by the United States (identified in Customs Notice 18-08 Surtaxes Imposed on Certain Products Originating in the United States, issued by the Canada Border Services Agency on June 29, 2018 and revised on July 11, 2018).

2. he United States and Canada agree to terminate all pending litigation between them in the World Trade Organization regarding the Section 232 action.

3. The United States and Canada will implement effective measures to:

a. Prevent the importation of aluminum and steel that is unfairly subsidized and/or sold at dumped prices; and

b. Prevent the transshipment of aluminum and steel made outside of Canada or the United States to the other country. Canada and the United States will consult together on these measures.

4. The United States and Canada will establish an agreed-upon process for monitoring aluminum and steel trade between them. In monitoring for surges, either country may treat products made with steel that is melted and poured in North America separately from products that are not.

5. In the event that imports of aluminum or steel products surge meaningfully beyond historic volumes of trade over a period of time, with consideration of market share, the importing country may request consultations with the exporting country. After such consultations, the importing party may impose duties of 25 percent for steel and 10 percent for aluminum in respect to the individual product(s) where the surge took place (on the basis of the individual product categories set forth in the attached chart). If the importing party takes such action, the exporting country agrees to retaliate only in the affected sector (i.e., aluminum and aluminum-containing products or steel).

US 232 Steel and Aluminum Tariffs lifted

As you may have heard, the Canadian Government just announced that the U.S. 232 tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum will be lifted in 48 hours. This is good news for the hundreds of thousands of Canadian workers whose jobs depend on the production of steel and aluminum.

As a Union we have been pushing as hard as we can in both the US and Canada to get these governments together to lift these tariffs. It is a credit to our Union’s efforts in Washington, Ottawa and across North America that we have put sufficient pressure on both governments to see that these tariffs between Canada and the U.S. were harmful and made no sense.

So we are pleased that the tariffs have been lifted and there will be no quotas going forward. The agreement also includes a mechanism to monitor import surges in steel and aluminum, but the details of that mechanism have not been finalized. This is important because we continue to see a global overcapacity in the steel market, and the US and Mexico have taken measures to close and protect their steel market from surges and the dumping of steel from other countries like China, Turkey and India.

We remain concerned that unlike Mexico and the US (and Europe) Canada has not yet taken measures to stabilize and protect the vast majority of our steel market from import surges caused by overcapacity and the closing of other markets.

CBSA reveals final trade safeguards for heavy plate, stainless steel wire

The Canadian Border Services Agency announced Friday the final ‘safeguard’ surtaxes meant to shield the domestic steel industry from competition from cheaper foreign imports of heavy plate and stainless steel wire.

Canada’s steel producers had been hoping the federal government would protect its market for other kinds of steel as well.

But the Canadian International Trade Tribunal investigated the merits of provisional safeguards placed on five other products earlier this winter and reported it found inadequate evidence to support claims that surges in foreign steel imports posed a serious threat to the domestic industry.

“Canadian steelworkers can count on this government,” Finance Minister Bill Morneau said in the House of Commons last month after he confirmed that the final safeguard surtaxes would be applied only to two kinds of steel.

Continue reading CBSA reveals final trade safeguards for heavy plate, stainless steel wire

Safeguards only to continue on heavy plate and stainless steel wire

Only two kinds of foreign steel imports, heavy plate and stainless steel wire, will continue to face trade remedies to protect Canada’s steel industry, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced Friday.

His decision on final safeguards follows the advice of the Canadian International Trade Tribunal, which earlier this month found no justification to continue a surtax on five other products that have also been subject to a provisional 25 per cent surtax since last October.

That provisional surtax on concrete reinforcing bar, energy tubular products, hot-rolled sheet, pre-painted steel and wire rod ends on Sunday. The surtax was triggered only when import volumes exceeded historical averages.

Friday’s release from the Finance Department did not specify what form the final safeguard action against these two products would take. Morneau’s office said that would be announced “in the coming days.”

Continue reading Safeguards only to continue on heavy plate and stainless steel wire

National Day of Mourning

Every year thousands of people gather around the world on April 28th to observe the National Day of Mourning. This Sunday please come out to Queen Elizabeth Court II City Hall, 2476 Victoria Ave @1:00 pm to honor the workers that have been killed, injured or made ill by work.

1 is to many!! We at the United Steelworkers commit to Fight for the Living and Mourn for the Dead to make work safer for all of us.

2019 Q1 Profit Sharing

The financial performance for the 1st quarter of 2019 resulted in profit sharing payment for employees under the Quarterly Bonus Plan. The payout will be $0.40 per eligible hour bonus payment for qualifying employees deposited into your bank account by May 3, 2019.



OTTAWA – Today, in the House of Commons, an NDP motion calling on the Minister of Finance to implement permanent safeguard measures to protect Canada’s steel industry passed unanimously.

“The passing of the NDP motion sends a strong message to the Liberal government that we can no longer sit still while thousands of jobs in our steel sector are in jeopardy,” said the NDP Critic for International Trade, Tracey Ramsey. “The illegal dumping of dirty steel by foreign countries in Canada is hurting workers, businesses and communities. The Finance Minister must act urgently before it’s too late and implement the safeguard measures.” 

The NDP motion urges the Finance Minister to follow the lead of European Union in implementing the steel safeguard measures to protect workers. The deadline Canada is up against to put in place those measures is April 27, 2019. The Minister of Finance must act now to avoid putting at risk Canadian jobs in the steel sector.

The motion that was passed today reads as follows:

“That, given that many of the 23, 000 direct jobs and 100,000 indirect jobs of the Canadian steel industry are at risk and that many of our economic partners, like the European Union, protect workers with permanent safeguard measures, the House urge the Minister of Finance to implement permanent safeguards measures for our steel industry immediately to avoid a deadline of April 27, 2019.”


Earlier this week we received a Memorandum of Understanding from the company regarding our Profit Sharing grievance. The grievance stated that the company was not providing us with the Audited Consolidated Statement of Income as outlined in the C.B.A. Specifically they were only giving us a spread sheet with numbers that could have come from anywhere. At the original meeting here in Regina we were told that the company knows they have been giving us the incorrect info but going forward they will provide us with the correct info from Ernst & Young and anything previous they will not give us. Well in Calgary the company provided us with the Audited Financial information from E&Y and it demonstrates and coincides with the figures and earnings from 2012 to present. Going forward the company has agreed to provide us with an extra level of information from the Auditor.

Freeland not clear whether US steel tariffs will kill USMCA ratification

Foreign Affairs minister Chrystia Freeland still calls U.S. tariffs on Canadian steel “illegal and unjust;” “frankly absurd”, but won’t say definitively if they would prevent her government from ratifying the new NAFTA agreement, or what the U.S. calls United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

Continue reading Freeland not clear whether US steel tariffs will kill USMCA ratification

S&PGlobalPlatts:US line pipe producers call for Section 232 tariffs to remain on Canada, Mexico

Pittsburgh — US line pipe producers are urging the US to keep in place the Section 232 tariffs on exports of large-diameter line pipe from Canada and Mexico, even if an updated trade agreement between the three countries is ratified.

The American Line Pipe Producers Association alleges that Canada and Mexico “continue to engage in unfair trade practices” with respect to US imports of large-diameter welded line pipe (LDWP), according to a statement from the group issued Tuesday.

Continue reading S&PGlobalPlatts:US line pipe producers call for Section 232 tariffs to remain on Canada, Mexico

Building Power

This past week members from USW Regina locals 5890, WASCO 5917, Calgary locals 6673, and Tenaris Prudential 7226 met for a Building Power Course facilitated by Mike Zielinski from The USW International Office, Strategic Campaign department. District 3 Director Steve Hunt and Assistant to the Director Scott Lunny opened our meeting on the first day with bargaining strategies and success stories and offered their support. We talked about ideas and strategies to enhance our communication skills, ways to increase solidarity and prep for upcoming bargaining.

We have established a CAT team (Communication Action Team) to share information in and make sure our membership is up to date on all our issues in real time. The point of the CAT team is to involve a broad spectrum of our membership to relay information from the Executive and the bargaining committee. These roles will be an integral part of our bargaining going forward and will have a large role in our fight to preserve and enhance our position in bargaining.

There will be specific training sessions for CAT team Coordinators and members- details to follow.
We still require a few more members to work with the coordinators, if you want to make a difference and be active in the process please reach out to your local President.

The four locals have committed to dates for a Bargaining school which will include CAT team coordinators.


There is a couple of opportunities for upcoming Union Education if anyone is interested. First we have the District Summer School in Kimberly, British Columbia from June 9-14 and we are approved to send up to 10 people. Next we have the Prairie School for Women June 9-13 in Waskesiu Lake and we are approved for 3 people to attend. If anyone is interested please either email or call the office at 569-9663.

Saskatchewan’s labour movement forms Solidarity Committee to help striking Saskatoon Co-op workers

Leaders from unions across the province have come together to form a Solidarity Committee aimed at helping striking Saskatoon Co-op workers get a fair deal from their employer.

“Workers at Saskatoon Co-op, who are members of UFCW Local 1400, have been on strike since November of 2018. That is a very long time for people to be out of work; it’s time the Saskatoon Co-op get serious about signing a fair deal,” said Lori Johb, Saskatchewan Federation of Labour (SFL) president, “our Solidarity Committee will seek to mobilize the nearly 100,000 members of the SFL across the province to put pressure on Saskatoon Co-op and Federated Co-operatives Limited (FCL),” she added.

Actions organized by the Solidarity Committee and campaign could include:

·       Informational leafleting in Saskatoon and across the province;

·       Public engagement and education to encourage people to avoid shopping at Saskatoon Co-op;

·       Days of Action to show support for striking workers;

·       Targeted requests to avoid doing business with FCL and FCL holdings.

“UFCW Local 1400 members at Saskatoon Co-op have been forced out on strike by a greedy employer who wants to roll back the principles of the co-op movement – principles like fairness and pay equity. Saskatoon Co-op, backed by FCL, is pushing a mean-spirited contract that would prevent new workers from earning the same wages as other workers for doing the exact same work and slash the wages of many workers by $8,000 per year,” said Johb, “it’s not fair and it’s not the co-op philosophy, so we intend to take that message to consumers not just in Saskatoon, but across Saskatchewan,” she added.

Saskatoon Co-op CEO Grant Wicks has been unwilling to bend on his demands for major wage cuts. Meanwhile, UFCW Local 1400 members have told the employer they’re willing to meet to reach a fair deal that reflects the needs of workers and the business.

Federated Co-operatives Limited CEO Scott Banda could intervene in the matter, but has chosen to stand by while workers are left out in the cold. The umbrella organization for Co-operatives in Canada, Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada (CMC), has also chosen to stay silent.

Trump’s trade chief hints at quotas in exchange for end to steel and aluminum tariffs

WASHINGTON—U.S. President Donald Trump will not lift his tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum without imposing other restrictions to replace them, like quotas, Trump’s trade chief suggested to Congress on Tuesday.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said any resolution to the tariff dispute with Canada and Mexico has to be one that “protects the president’s basic program” on steel and aluminum. Trump’s view and his view, he said, is that the tariffs have been “very successful.”

Continue reading Trump’s trade chief hints at quotas in exchange for end to steel and aluminum tariffs

U.S. working on steel, aluminum tariff relief for Canada, Mexico, says Lighthizer

The United States is working on a plan that lifts steel and aluminum tariffs off Mexican and Canadian products while preserving the gains of those tariffs overall, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said on Tuesday.

“What I’m trying to do is a have a practical solution to a real problem … get rid of tariffs on these two, let them maintain their historic access to the U.S. market, which I think will allow us to still maintain the benefit of the steel and aluminum program,” Lighthizer told the U.S. Senate Finance Committee in Washington D.C. at a hearing about the World Trade Organization.

U.S. President Donald Trump imposed tariffs — 25 per cent on steel and 10 per cent on aluminum — back in 2018 on national security grounds. Tariffs on both sides of the border have disrupted supply chains and added extra costs for consumers and businesses across a wide range of industries.

Continue reading U.S. working on steel, aluminum tariff relief for Canada, Mexico, says Lighthizer

Donations for our injured Brother

Brothers and Sisters

Your USW 5890 Executive would like to thank you all for your generosity in donating to help our injured brother. We would also like to thank USW 6717{Weyburn}, USW 5971{Regina}, USW 6673{Calgary}, USW Soar Chapter 19, Wheat City Metals Social Club, Denise Deck{Calgary} and Unifor 594{Co-op Refinery} along with each individual that donated. With all of you help we were able to raise over $18,000. His life will never be the same and hopefully this him will help in one way or another. We know he is very grateful for everyone’s support and wishes he could thank everyone of you for thinking of him.

Once again


In Solidarity

White House official says heavy’ talks underway to lift steel and aluminum tariff

WASHINGTON — A senior White House official said Sunday the optimism from Canada’s ambassador that the two countries will reach a deal on steel and aluminum tariffs is well founded.

On Thursday, Ambassador David MacNaughton told reporters he expected the two countries to reach a positive resolution on the tariffs within the “next few weeks.

Continue reading White House official says heavy’ talks underway to lift steel and aluminum tariff



For the last six months, our large diameter welded pipe business has weathered great challenges in the face of increased trade barriers that combined have added a near-50 percent mark-up on our sales from Canada to the United States. Today, I am pleased to share with you that the U.S. Department of Commerce issued a determination that will provide at least some relief to ongoing trade-related difficulties our business faces.
In August 2018, following a petition filed by a coalition of U.S. pipe producers, the Commerce Department imposed a 24.38 percent anti-dumping duty on welded line pipe greater than 16-inch outside diameter exported from Canada into the United States. In its final determination issued today, Commerce affirmed the establishment of anti-dumping duties against several countries, including Canada, but established a 12.32 percent anti-dumping rate – half the previous rate – for EVRAZ North America large diameter welded pipe coming into the United States from Canada.
While we are encouraged by this announcement, other duties remain in place, including the Section 232 steel tariffs. For our large diameter welded pipe products, that 25 percent tariff on steel coming into the United States gets added onto the now-12.32 percent anti-dumping rate. An improvement, but still a significant premium our customers must pay.
I shared with you in August some of the steps we are taking to deal with the trade environment we find ourselves in, notably in dealings with our valued customers and as we engage political leaders in Washington and Ottawa. Those efforts continue as we work to push for the lifting of remaining tariffs negatively affecting our business. I’d particularly like to thank all of our colleagues who worked so hard on presenting our position to the Commerce Department, a cross-functional group pulling together sales, logistics and production data from across the company.
We have the highest-quality line pipe in the business and have significant opportunities for growth in the year ahead. Our business has gotten off to a strong start in 2019 and I am counting on all of you to focus on working safely as we improve our quality, increase our productivity and manage our costs all to meet the needs of our customers.

Canada quietly moves to resolve steel spat with Mexico

Finance Minister Bill Morneau has quietly reversed a controversial decision to slap a surtax on two types of Mexican steel imports.

Effective Feb. 2, up to a new limit, Mexican energy tubular products (such as those used to build pipelines) and wire rod shipments will no longer cost an extra 25 per cent under Canada’s emergency ‘safeguard’ measures.

Continue reading Canada quietly moves to resolve steel spat with Mexico

Steelworkers lead protest over dismissal of criminal charges in death of truck driver

Labour activists yesterday protested the dismissal of criminal charges against a concrete company accused of negligence in a truck driver’s death. Cabinet two years ago promised to step up enforcement of a law that made employers criminally liable for needless industrial accidents.

“The consequences of workplace deaths and injuries must be more than a cost of doing business,” Marty Warren, Ontario director of the United Steelworkers, yesterday said in a statement: “Since the law was enacted, there have been more than 15,000 workplace-related deaths in Canada.”

Continue reading Steelworkers lead protest over dismissal of criminal charges in death of truck driver