Media Releases Apr 23, 2021

Leading industry associations call for immediate action by federal government to prevent Port of Montreal strike


(OTTAWA) – April 23, 2021 –Canada’s leading national industry associations today issued the following statement in response to planned official strike action by CUPE Local 375 at the Port of Montreal:

We urgently call on the federal Minister of Labour to use all tools at her disposal to ensure that Canada’s second-largest port remains open, including immediately introducing back-to-work legislation.  The announcement of a possible strike as early as Monday by CUPE Local 375 presents an immediate and pressing threat to jobs and the economic recovery both within Quebec and across Canada.

A recent analysis by the Montreal consulting firm Acronyme estimates theeconomic effects of a ten-day shutdown of the port as between $10 million to $25 million per day. The cumulative impact of the threat of labour action, the partial strike, and now the announcement of an indefinite strike threatens Canada’s economic competitiveness and global reputation as a viable trading partner.

For weeks businesses in all sectors have been severely affected by the threat of strike action, forcing many to divert shipments to other ports or use other modes of transportation to get goods to market. This only further adds congestion and bottlenecks activity at key points of entry for Canadian businesses.

Despite ongoing efforts to reach agreement between parties, official strike action is scheduled to begin as of April 26.  Canadian businesses continue to face unprecedented challenges associated with COVID-19. With the still-fragile economic recovery at stake, businesses in Quebec and across Canada cannot afford the damage a strike at the Port will have on operations and jobs.

About the Canadian Chamber of Commerce – Because Business Matters

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce helps build the businesses that support our families, our communities and our country. We do this by influencing government policy, by providing essential business services and by connecting businesses to information they can use, to opportunities for growth and to a network of local chambers, businesses, decision-makers and peers from across the country, in every sector of the economy and at all levels of government, as well as internationally. We are unapologetic in our support for business and the vital role it plays in building and sustaining our great nation.

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For more information, please contact:
Emily Walsh
ewalsh@chamber.ca

List of Industry Associations

Hon. Perrin Beatty, P.C., O.C. President and Chief Executive Officer Canadian Chamber of CommerceMichael Graydon Chief Executive Officer Food, Health, and Consumer Products Canada  
Luke Chapman Interim President
Beer Canada  
Derek Nighbor President and Chief Executive Officer Forest Products Association of Canada
Shannon Coombs President Canadian Consumer Specialty Products Association  John Corey President Freight Management Association                   
Dan Kelly President and Chief Executive Officer Canadian Federation of Independent Business  Sandy MacLeod President & CEO Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute of Canada  
Jim Keon President Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association  Kim Campbell Chair Importers and Exporters Canada
Ralph Suppa President and General Manager Canadian Institute of Plumbing and Heating  Lisa Kowalchuk Executive Director Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce  
Bruce Rodgers Executive Director Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association  Pierre Gratton President and Chief Executive Officer Mining Association of Canada  
Dennis Darby President and Chief Executive Officer Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters  David Wojcik President and Chief Executive Officer Mississauga Board of Trade
Ron Lemaire President Canadian Produce Marketing Association  Greg Cherewyk President Pulse Canada
Brian Kingston
President and Chief Executive Officer Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers’ Association  
Cathy Campbell President Responsible Distribution Canada
Carol McGlogan President and Chief Executive Officer Electro-Federation Canada  Diane J. Brisebois President and Chief Executive Officer Retail Council of Canada  
Karen Proud
President and Chief Executive Officer
Fertilizer Canada
Christian Buhagiar
President and Chief Executive Officer Supply Chain Canada