Calgary concrete workers win 9.25% pay raise

These workers will also get increases to boot allowances, shift premiums, and the employer contributions for their pensions.

In the May 2023 Bargaining Update released last month, Alberta’s jobs, economy, and northern development ministry indicated that a new collective agreement for Lafarge Canada had been reached.

Settled on 7 May 2023, the new agreement is between Lafarge Canada Inc. and Local 362 of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters, also known as the Teamsters Union, which represents about 70 workers out of the company’s Calgary “ready mix” operation.

These workers—which include wash out persons, helpers, and truck drivers, including mixer trucks, trailer trucks, booster trucks, and gravel trucks—had been working on an old contract that had expired only two months prior.

According to the May 2023 Bargaining Update, these workers will receive a total increase of 9.25% over the 3-year term of their contract. Here’s how it breaks down per year.

1st year 4.00%
2nd year 3.25%
3rd year 2.00%

That works out to an average annual increase of just 0.61%.

The student rate, which the company uses to pay workers who are new to the company, will increase from $5 less than the rate they’d normally be paid for their classification to $5.50 less.

Under the new contract, the night shift premium will increase from $2 an hour to $3 an hour. As well, they have merged the afternoon and night shift premiums. The previous night shift included all hours worked between 18:00 and 04:59 the next morning, while the afternoon shift spanned from noon until 17:59. The new shift, which will be called the night shift, will now begin at 15:00.

Workers will get a 12th general holiday under the new contract: Truth and Reconciliation Day.

The new contract includes a change to shift start times. According to the new contract, Lafarge “will distribute shift start times using 2 call out methods: primary and secondary”.

Lafarge will distribute the primary call out list no later than 18:00 for work on the following day. Where this list can’t confirm a start time for all workers, it will confirm the majority of drivers required for that days’ work.

If the employer can’t confirm all workers using the primary call out, they will distribute their secondary call out will be distributed no later than 19:00 for work on the following day and will confirm any remaining drivers required for that day’s work.

If Lafarge requires a worker to get a physical exam, they no longer have to provide the worker 24 hours notice under the new contract.

The annual boot allowance will increase from $250 to $275 this year and $300 next year.

The travel allowance for will change from 53¢ a kilometre to “the amount of equivalent to the Canada Revenue Agency maximum per kilometre” for the distance travelled outside Calgary’s corporate limits.

Lafarge also agreed to increase the pension premiums it pays from $3.25 per hour worked to $3.75 per hour this year and $3.90 per hour in 2025.

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By Kim Siever

Kim Siever is an independent queer journalist based in Lethbridge, Alberta. He writes daily news articles, focusing on politics and labour.

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