The CMG congratulates Journal de Québec employees for reaching an agreement with Quebecor to end the lockout that has been going on for more than 14 months. The locked-out employees voted in favour of the agreement on July 2.
According to the Canadian Union of Public Employees, which represents the workers, the agreement includes “salary increases of 2.5% per year, the return of the classified department to Quebec City from Kanata, a 37.5-hour workweek over four days for all employees (37.5 hours over five days for employees in the classified department), an additional week of vacation for occasional temporary employees with more than 10 years of seniority, the introduction of a floor on the number of jobs to guarantee the current number of journalists and photographers in order to maintain quality local coverage in Quebec while permitting multimedia, changes in the management of the printing presses in exchange for guaranteed employer investment in new equipment, the implementation of a retirement severance program (early retirement) offering four weeks of salary per year for each year of service up to 18 months (together with a possibility of employment at Videotron for affected office workers).”
The Guild has supported the locked-out workers since the beginning of the conflict in April 2007. Since February, the Guild has been sending a monthly donation to the union to support the workers’ campaign. Denis Bolduc, the workers’ spokesperson, gave a speech at the recent Guild convention in Toronto and received contributions totaling more than $2,000 from the delegates.
The employees are expected to return to work in August. In the meantime, they will continue to publish MediaMatinQuébec, the free daily they launched in April 2007 to protest the lockout.