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Unifor win after 37 days of strike action

news 18 Apr 2024

The International Transport Workers' Federation’s (ITF) affiliate union Unifor has ratified an agreement with CN Autoport after 37 days of strike action at Halifax, Canada. 

During the dispute, CN Autoport used scab labour in an attempt to break the strike and undermine the collective bargaining process.  

Unifor Local 100 broadened their campaign across Canada, which forced the company back to the bargaining table to negotiate a fair collective agreement and successfully kick out the scab labour.  

Unifor members at CN Autoport have now ratified a three-year collective agreement. The agreement sees wage increases in each year of the agreement; lump sum bonuses in year one and two, as well as an additional paid personal day, improvements to vacation, pensions, and the cost of benefits.  

Lana Payne, Unifor National President said: "This was a very difficult strike for our members and a very tough round of bargaining given that CN decided to undermine our fundamental right to strike and to bargain fairly and freely by using scabs as of day one of the dispute. It was and is disgraceful behaviour, designed to intimidate and break the spirit of our Local 100 members.”   

“I am very proud of our members. Their spirit was not broken. They have shown courage and dignity in standing up to the bully tactics of CN Autoport. They have shown that solidarity makes a difference. And CN can be guaranteed that Unifor will not rest until we achieve anti-scab legislation in every province across Canada,” said Payne. 

ITF’s Inland Sections Secretary Noel Coard said “This is a prime example of what can be achieved with international solidarity and support. ITF will continue to support Unifor and all our rail affiliates in difficult situations as we work together to expand our network of strength and workers’ voices at rail multinationals. We will continue to fight back against the use of scab labour, and push for anti-scab legislation to support workers’ right to collective bargaining. The ITF stands tall behind our Canadian rail affiliates as they continue their influential fight,” said Coard.  

ITF’s global chair of the railway section David Gobé said: “We are proud that Unifor has reached a consensus with a strong collective agreement with CN. The right to strike is a fundamental right for all workers and should be upheld in any respectable democracy. The use of scab labour must end. We will continue to support our affiliates in Canada as they negotiate with CN and CP and fight for the protection of workers’ rights and safety. Those who live are those who struggle.” 

ITF continues to back Unifor as it advocates for the immediate passage of federal anti-scab legislation Bill C-58.  



  • Unifor Local 100 represents 239 workers at the Autoport vehicle processing and transshipment hub in Eastern Passage, Nova Scotia.  
  • A wholly-owned subsidiary of CN Rail, Autoport is one of the busiest facilities of its kind in North America, processing and transshipping close to 185,000 vehicles annually.