Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Union Busters Update

Currently workers at the Northern Canadian Ekati Diamond Mine in Diavik, owned by BHP are on Strike.

It is a misnomer to call this a mine,
it is an enormous large scale operation that is less a mine than a huge deep open pit processing operation like the Tar Sands.

A blog has been set up BHP Labour Watch, by the striking workers that details their issues and day to day struggles.

The union busting goon squad from AFI is currently on the picket line protecting scabs crossing the lines, AFI will be speaking at a Human Resource Managers conference in Victoria this week promoting their corporate protection services.

Bottomline is that AFI are professional union busters, their purpose on the picket line is to intimidate strikers, harrass them, attack them, document them for court cases by the employer, in other words to be the front line in the bosses attack on workers rights. Just like their predecesors the Pinkertons.

BHP Labour Watch says;


BHP, has hired a southern secturity force to intimidate and harass picketers and citizens of Yellowknife. But that isn't all this company does. Here is an excerpt from one of their pomotional docmuments. You decide: is BHP telling the truth?

AFI strives to recruit the best personnel for clients requiring replacement workers to continue operations. Our complete replacement workers service includes performance monitoring and the administration of payroll and benefits, which removes clients from all direct responsibility for the temporary workforce.
Accredited through the Professional Recruiting Association of Canada, our recruiting teams use a comprehensive, three-phase selection process to identify the best possible employees.
Note that the skill or trade of replacement workers required will affect the recruiting time and rates of pay.

Neither BHP or AFI have any respect for Northern values that is obvious.


Ekati “Goons” Harassing Yellowknifers

(Yellowknife) Ekati’s professional strike breakers have been attempting to intimidate Yellowknife citizens showing sympathy for the Ekati diamond workers currently on strike.

The President of the Union of Northern Workers, Todd Parsons has been receiving reports of people being followed around Yellowknife and even to their personal residences late at night.

“I think it goes beyond simple harassment when women are being followed home. I think this is very close to stalking which is a criminal offence.”

When consulted, a BC Federation of Labour spokesperson said they were not surprised by the use of intimidating tactics. The southern security force hired by BHP Billiton is well known for its use of provocative and intimidating tactics.

“I am disgusted by BHP’s recent statement that they would not tolerate harassment by our members while they turn around and employ people to specifically harass not only our members but innocent citizens of Yellowknife,” said UNW President Todd Parsons.

A tip o' the blog to my pal Bill Tieleman for this.

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