SALABERRY-DE-VALLEYFIELD, Que.—Employees on strike at the CEZinc refinery in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Québec, plan to protest their employer Noranda’s Annual General Meeting on Apr. 28 in Toronto.
Protest plans for the Noranda AGM were announced by Syndicat des Métallos (United Steelworkers) Québec Director Alain Croteau on Mar. 30, during a rally involving more than 400 demonstrators outside the CEZinc plant.
“If CEZinc management continues to ignore the proposals of its workers, we will take the necessary steps to be heard by the people who make the decisions,” Croteau said.
He continued, “We have gone to London and to Australia in the past to stand up to multinationals that have provoked labour disputes with our members, so we don’t mind a short trip to Toronto to expose this corporation’s behaviour.”
Striking employees from the CEZinc refinery were joined for the Mar. 30 demonstration by members of several Québec unions, including CSN labour federation members from the Glencore-owned Horne smelter in Rouyn-Noranda. The CEZinc refinery in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield is co-owned by Noranda Income Fund and Glencore.
“We have to wonder if the shareholders really have a clear understanding of this situation. One thing is certain, they will be hearing from us, very clearly, through the walls of their meeting room in Toronto,” said Manon Castonguay, president of Steelworkers Local 6586, representing the 370 striking workers.
The CEZinc employees are into the seventh week of their strike.