Teamsters Canada striking Coca-Cola workers reach agreement

Teamsters Union members employed by Coca-Cola in B.C. ratified a new collective agreement on Thursday, August 10 2017 ending a job action which began on July 24.

All members are expected to be back on the job by Monday August 14.

Their 370 members who work in production, warehousing, trucking and merchandising at Coca-Cola facilities in Richmond, Chilliwack, Coquitlam and the Sunshine Coast, ratified the new agreement Thursday afternoon.

"Our members voted in support of the mediated settlement and are happy to be back on the job," said Teamsters Local 213 Business Representative Jim Loyst in a press release issued Thursday afternoon.

"They were generally satisfied with the language we were able to achieve for both our pension and health and welfare benefits. it was important for our members to initiate this job action to protect their hard-earned benefits."

The union met 17 times with the company and completed four days of intense mediation at the labour board, with no success. One of the key issues was returning security to a health and welfare program in their collective agreement. Agreement was finally reached late Tuesday night after a "marathon" session with mediator Vince Ready.

Workers were on the picket line at the Chilliwack bottling plant and distribution centre on Yale Road West for more than two weeks.

Stores in some locations started to see shortages, and Safeway posted a sign to customers regarding the labour dispute.

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