Media Releases Mar 17, 2021

Leading industry associations call on federal government to prevent strike action at the Port of Montreal


(OTTAWA) – March 17 2021 – Today, Canada’s leading national industry associations issued the following statement regarding the threat of strike action by longshoremen at the Port of Montreal:

“Our national associations represent hundreds of thousands of businesses that supply essential goods and materials to every sector of the economy.  As Canada struggles towards economic recovery, the impact of strike action at the Port of Montreal on the timely delivery of these essential goods cannot be overstated.  The labour dispute between the longshoremen and the Maritime Employers Association (MEA) is taking a significant toll on fragile supply chains and requires the immediate attention of the federal government.  The Chamber of Commerce and our association partners are urging the federal government to use all available resources to facilitate reconciliation between these two parties. 

It has been a full year since Canada has grappled with the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.  Labour action at the Port of Montreal had previously stunted Canadian supply chains back in August 2020 when we first raised the issue. This is a precarious time for Canada as we slowly move towards economic recovery, and further labour disruptions present a direct threat to the health of Canadian businesses and their employees. The livelihoods of tens of thousands of workers are at risk as a result of labour action, and supply chains simply cannot sustain further shutdowns.

It is with great urgency that we call on the federal Minister of Labour to take steps towards resolution between the longshoremen and the MEA. It is imperative that immediate measures are taken to ensure operations at the port are allowed to continue undisrupted.  This is absolutely critical to keep Canadians employed and facilitate economic recovery across the country. 

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 Commerce

Luke Chapman
Interim President
Beer Canada

Shannon Coombs
President
Canadian Consumer Specialty Products Association

Dan Kelly
President and Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Federation of Independent Business

Ralph Suppa
President and General Manager
Canadian Institute of Plumbing and Heating

Michael Graydon
Chief Executive Officer
Food, Health, and Consumer Products Canada

Kim Campbell
Chair
I.E. Canada

Bruce Rodgers
Executive Director
Canadian International Freight Forwarders Association

Dennis Darby
President and Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters

Ron Lemaire
President
Canadian Produce Marketing Association

Brian Kingston
President and Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Vehicle Manufacturers Association

Carol McGlogan
President and Chief Executive Officer
Electro-Federation Canada

Derek Nighbor
President and Chief Executive Officer
Forest Products Association of Canada

John Corey
President
Freight Management Association

Sandy MacLeod
President & CEO
Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute of Canada

Lisa Kowalchuk
Executive Director
Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Pierre Gratton
President and Chief Executive Officer
Mining Association of Canada

David Wojcik
President and Chief Executive Officer
Mississauga Board of Trade

Cathy Campbell
President
Responsible Distribution Canada

Diane J. Brisebois
President and Chief Executive Officer
Retail Council of Canada

Christian Buhagiar
President and Chief Executive Officer
Supply Chain Canada