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HomeNewsCity of Yellowknife Issues Surprise Lock-Out Notice

City of Yellowknife Issues Surprise Lock-Out Notice

Following the official announcement of an upcoming strike from the Union of Northern Workers, the City of Yellowknife has issued a lock-out notice.

Over the weekend, the UNW sent communications to the Yellowknife government that they would be on strike as of Wednesday, February 8th. This message was sent to the City at 9:45 PM on February 4, which fulfilled the 72-hour notice that was mandatory for the Union to follow.

The City responded with a communication two hours later serving Lock-Out Notice to the Union at 12:04 AM on February 5. This was shortly after the City had informed the general public of the coming strike, though no such press release was issued for the Lock-Out.

Though the parties are set to resume negotiations in mediation on February 6 and 7, the surprise Lock-Out notice from the City casts serious doubts on its intentions to settle an agreement in mediation with the Union.

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“Though the Union followed process and served notice to be in a legal strike position February 8, the parties still had the option to extend mediation and avoid labour disruption if the mediation was productive, which was the hope of the bargaining team,” says UNW President Gayla Thunstrom. “I am really disappointed that the bullying and intimidation from the employer has escalated, but it shows what city workers have been dealing with.”

The Lock-Out notice, in direct response to the Strike Mandate from the Union, means that the City held a secret ballot vote among the employers who are members of the organization and received the approval of the majority of the employers who voted.

Mediation is still set for Monday afternoon and Tuesday regardless.

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