THUNDER BAY – BUSINESS – Resolute Forest Products Inc. (NYSE: RFP) (TSX: RFP) today announced ratification of a four-year collective agreement by Unifor union members at seven of the company’s pulp and paper mills in Canada, following an agreement-in-principle reached on May 15, 2022.
“We are pleased with the result of the vote, which is a testament to the hard work and collaborative efforts of both the company and the union in recent years to address the challenges we are facing and to ensure the competitiveness of the business,” said Remi G. Lalonde, president and chief executive officer. “Thanks to the support of our employees, we continue to pursue our vision to operate a model manufacturing company, built with the strongest business values, the highest respect for sustainability and the calling to serve our people and communities.”
“The result clearly shows the agreement meets the expectations of our members, which were significant in this round of negotiations,” said Renaud Gagné, Unifor Quebec Director. “And most importantly, the many gains made will help attract and maintain the workforce the industry needs.”
Stephen Boon, National Representative in Dryden said, “we commend the hard work of the Unifor bargaining committee at Resolute Forest Products in establishing a solid industry pattern for Eastern Canada mills and woodlands operations. We are now in a position to move forward with talks to replicate the pattern with numerous Unifor represented forestry operations across Northwestern Ontario like Domtar, Interfor and West Fraser. High inflation rates have eaten into our members’ wages while area mills have enjoyed record profits. This new pattern is in line with the current economic climate facing the industry and will help ensure some of these profits are shared with Unifor members across the region.”
The collective agreements cover approximately 700 hourly employees represented by Unifor at Resolute’s Dolbeau; Gatineau; Kénogami; Saint-Félicien and currently indefinitely idled Amos and Baie-Comeau pulp and paper facilities in Quebec; and the Thunder Bay operation in Ontario. The seven mills account for about 50% of the company’s total pulp and paper production capacity.