Some workers at province-run cannabis stores in Quebec, Canada are on an indefinite strike over a pay dispute, the Montreal Gazette reports. Cannabis workers affiliated with the Confédération des Syndicats Nationaux (CSN) have negotiated an agreement while workers with the Syndicat Canadien de la Fonction Publique (SCFP), which is affiliated with the Fédération des Travailleurs et Travailleuses du Québec (FTQ), the largest trade union in Quebec, remain on strike.
SCFP local president David Clément said the starting wage for Société Québécoise du Cannabis (SQDC) is $17.12 an hour which he told the Gazette is “too low,” adding that while the union has proposed a settlement, it has received “radio silence” from the government.
“The SQDC presented us with the agreement it had with the CSN, in terms of salary. For our negotiating committee, our executive council, this is not an agreement or an offer that would be interesting because it would keep us, for the next four years, with salaries that are (laughable) for a Crown corporation and for the job we do.” — Clément to the Gazette
The strike has led to walkouts at SQDC shops and some of the locations will be occasionally closed throughout the summer, and at least one for an “indefinite time,” the Crown-run company said in a press release.
A spokesperson for SQDC management declined to comment on the strike or negotiations to the Gazette but said the firm’s “objective is always to reach a negotiated agreement to the satisfaction of the parties involved.”
In an email to Global News, SQDC said it does fully recognize “the right of employees to exercise pressure tactics in the context of the negotiations in progress.”
“The corporation remains available to continue negotiations,” the company said in the email, “and our wish is to reach a negotiated agreement to the satisfaction of the parties concerned.”
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