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Steelworkers Step Up Global Campaign Against Glencore

MONTREAL/BOGOTA – As part of a global campaign against resource giant Glencore, representatives of United Steelworkers (USW) members on strike at the CEZinc refinery in Quebec are meeting today in Bogota, Colombia, with fellow Glencore employees from around the world.

The meeting of worldwide Glencore workers is being held under the aegis of IndustriALL Global Union, an international labour federation representing 50 million workers in 140 countries.

“We are here to build solidarity with Glencore workers and to expose the true nature of the labour dispute in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield (Que.), where workers at CEZinc are now into their seventh month on strike,” said Dominic Lemieux, Assistant to the USW/Syndicat des Métallos Quebec Director.

“Company management is saying this dispute will be settled in Quebec. That’s true and it’s why we remain open to meaningful negotiations, once the company shows it is serious and willing to seek a resolution,” Lemieux said.

“In the meantime, we also know from experience that when dealing with multinationals that profit from globalisation every day, building international worker solidarity matters.”

Lemieux is accompanied at the Bogota meeting by Vincent Mercille-Barrette, a representative of Steelworkers Local 6486, which represents the 370 workers on strike at the CEZinc refinery.

“We are at the stage where the employer has to understand that CEZinc’s workers are ready to see this through all the way to the end,” Mercille-Barrette said. “The company must never doubt the strength of our convictions. We will last that famous ‘one day longer.’ ”

When he returns from Colombia, Mercille-Barrette will travel across Quebec to meet with other Steelworkers locals and build support and financial assistance for the CEZinc strikers.

“A multinational like Glencore will not bring Quebec workers to their knees,” Lemieux said. “They don’t understand trade unionists in Quebec and they don’t understand us. Thanks to our solidarity, we’ll get through this.”

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For further information:

Clairandrée Cauchy, 514 774-4001, ccauchy@metallos.ca

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Media Contacts

Communications Director:
Bob Gallagher
bgallagher@usw.ca
416-544-5966 or
416-434-2221

Communications Department:
Lydia Forge
communications@usw.ca
416-544-5991 

Communications Department - Québec
Clairandrée Cauchy
ccauchy@metallos.ca
514-774-4001 

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United Steelworkers
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Toronto, ON M4P 1K7