Elk Falls Workers

Campbell River B.C.

Another arbitration

The local had another arbitration yesterday. This one is about members that severed when over the age of 55 years old and aren’t getting retiree benefits or bridging at 60 years old. Like the last one we now await the decision. Hopefully in the next month or two.

I know how frustrating it has been for the retired members that have waited so long for an answer to these grievances.

Hard to believe how much time has gone by since the closure. Hopefully everyone’s lives are going well.

November 11, 2011 - Posted by | General


  1. Read in the Campbell River Courior, from Glazier View Press, that Catalyst said business as usual for Employees and their benefits and pensions… I guess, knowing them and reading between the lines, we’re screwed…AGAIN… LOL. Interesting to find out what the arbitrator decided on this issue…

    Comment by Dennis | January 23, 2012 | Reply

    • Hey stop talking so negativly about our old work site, my shares are dropping. Please join me in positive thinking that one day Catalyst shares will be at $0.10.

      Comment by Rickj | January 30, 2012 | Reply

      • LOL take another puff on that funny cigarette anf then you’ll think about 11 cents…..lol. BUY MORE RICKYJ…

        Comment by Dennis | January 31, 2012

  2. It is now January 21st, any new updates on the retirement arbritration? A decision must have been handed down by now.

    Comment by Jeff Harrison | January 21, 2012 | Reply

    • There hasn’t been an award handed down yet – shouldn’t be long though…

      Comment by Ian | January 28, 2012 | Reply

  3. Good morning from lovely downtown Sparwood, British Columbia.

    I checked my online banking information this morning and discovered a deposit from Catalyst in the form of a payday …….. don’t tell me that the past three years has been a bad dream and I have actually been blowing shifts at work all this time !! That would be very awkward.

    I cannot be the sole recipient of the gift ; is there a simple/brief explanation out there to be had ??

    It is Christmas; perhaps I have been visited by the GHOST OF PAYCHEQUES PAST ?? !!!!

    Hoping all is well with our old family …… how are the kids ??


    Comment by Bradley Briscoe | December 10, 2011 | Reply

    • Brad – That’s good to hear someone is getting something…
      We have been working to resolve the issue of when the company unilaterally put people back to base rate. For people that had this happen, when they took floaters or supplement holidays, they didn’t get the proper rate.
      Last year about this time, many people got a cheque from Catalyst which corrected this problem from May 1, 2009 onwards. Unfortunately, we discovered a number of people that had their rates changed prior to May 1, and so they fell through the cracks and weren’t captured by the last payout.
      You probably remember the “cut Line” and the “grey zone” on all the seniority lists that were floating around the mill after the announcement that the KraftMill was to be closed. It was very confusing to most people, including the company, who changed a number of peoples card rate when they shouldn’t have. Dan, and I spent a lot of time recreating where people were in the mill, and whether they should have had their rates reduced. We got together with payroll in Naniamo to go over when peoples rates were changed. We found a number of employees who’s rate had been changed because they were temporarily displaced from their departments because of the curtailment of #1 paper machine. For many of them this shouldn’t have happened.
      Once we identified these people, the Company has obviously done the recalculations and the cheque you received is the result.
      Merry Christmas –


      Comment by Ian | December 12, 2011 | Reply

      • The grey zone issue and the “bumping” back to base rate caused me to leave the mill as a base rate employee rather than as a posted equipment operator. I was miffed at the time because it made about a ten percent difference when calculating my severance package. Nightshift for me again tonight ….. some things never change !!!

        (: bb

        Comment by Bradley Briscoe | December 12, 2011

  4. Hi, again, Dan. Thanks for keeping in touch with us all. Do you know what happens if Catalyst goes down…..? I mean about our contracts and benefits etc.? Maybe I’m naive, but the share price I saw today makes me think they are about to go bankrupt? Any info, much appreciated. Thanks. Mike.

    Comment by mike macklin | November 18, 2011 | Reply

    • Mike:
      Despite the share price depicting the Company as worthless, Catalyst continues to say they have cash on hand to continue to operate, and that they expect better results next quarter. That quarter keeps getting pushed out to the next with no end in sight. But back to your question. If Catalyst goes into CCAA (creditor protection), there could be a reduction or loss of retirees benefits (medical and bridging). In other jurisdictions, employers have had to ask the courts for permission to reduce or stop making those payments, and the courts have allowed it.
      If they were to declare bankruptcy, I would expect both the bridge and retiree benefits to stop almost immediately. But in either scenario, the money in your pension is safe, and will keep on coming. Hope that helps – Ian

      Comment by Ian | November 18, 2011 | Reply

      • Thanks for your info, Ian. Best regards. Mike.

        Comment by Mike Macklin | November 25, 2011

      • According to the Winnepeg Free Press “breaking news” today, Catalyst has refinanced and turned control of the company over to its bondholders. They make reference to union contracts expiring April 30th. Do you think this mean bridging will be gone then? Thanks for any info you can provide, Ian.

        Comment by mike macklin | January 17, 2012

  5. You would think, it would be an easy straight forward decision Dan, as they’re only a few of us left, that were at Elk Falls. What was done before, a precedent issue, should be grand fathered to the rest of the remaining few of us. I know it’s very frustrating, but I guess that’s what they like, BUT life still goes on…..

    Comment by Dennis | November 12, 2011 | Reply

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