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Nuclear workers issue plea ahead of possible Darlington strike/lockout

Nuclear workers issue plea ahead of possible Darlington strike/lockout

MISSISSAUGA, ONT.—The Society of Professional Engineers and Associates (SPEA) has issued a statement calling for a fair resolution of contract negotiations in advance of an upcoming strike/lockout deadline that would disrupt refurbishment work at Ontario’s Darlington Generating Station.

The SPEA is a union representing engineers, scientists and technical and administrative staff working for Candu Energy Inc., the nuclear division of SNC-Lavalin. The workers are currently involved in refurbishing two of the four reactors at the Darlington plant east of Toronto, stated a release.

The strike/lockout deadline is midnight May 29. Contracts expired at the end of 2021.

“It is incredibly frustrating that after six months of bargaining and government-mediated conciliation efforts, SNC-Lavalin’s Candu Energy representatives have stalled, not even tabling key monetary proposals,” stated Reza Ziaei, specialist resident engineer and SPEA vice-president, in a statement.

“Candu Energy requires highly specialized scientific and engineering staff.  We need to make sure we can keep and attract the top-tier talent we need to deliver critical refurbishment and maintenance work for Ontario’s nuclear fleet. We are determined to do whatever it takes to reach fair, competitive agreements, and swiftly. But we need Candu Energy to bring the same focus to the bargaining table.” 

There was a 12-week strike in the sector shortly after SNC-Lavalin assumed responsibility for the business in 2011. 

“We cannot afford a return to the mistakes of the past, nor can the businesses and residents in Ontario who depend on our work,” added Ziaei.

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