WABUSH, NL, Aug. 29, 2019 /CNW/ - The United Steelworkers (USW) today announced a significant enhancement of a Community Fund created by the union to provide crucial health benefits to Scully Mine retirees.
"This infusion of funding is an important step in building the critical mass needed for the new Community Fund to provide meaningful support to retirees who lost their health benefits," said Marty Warren, USW Director for Atlantic Canada and Ontario.
Scully Mine retirees saw their health and welfare benefits eliminated when Cliffs Natural Resources idled its Canadian operations and subsequently filed for creditor protection in 2015.
"Our union has worked tirelessly over the last four years to do everything we can to find a new owner for Scully Mine, to ensure the mine would employ unionized workers with a good collective agreement and to help the most-vulnerable people affected during this process ? the retirees," Warren said.
"Retirees have faced tremendous hardship as a result of the loss of their benefits and the actions of the former mine operator. We are making good on our commitment to ease the anxiety and suffering of these pensioners."
The Community Fund for Scully Mine retirees was created as a result of recent negotiations between the USW and the mine's new owner, Tacora Resources. Tacora, which recently restarted the Scully Mine, has committed to making quarterly contributions to the fund during the life of the collective agreement with the USW.
The USW today announced that the union also will be making a significant investment into the Community Fund. The investment will come from a USW Local 6285 fund.
After the Scully Mine was idled during the insolvency proceedings, USW Local 6285 had no members remaining, requiring the USW international union to appoint an administrator to oversee the local's affairs. During the administration period, which continues, it was determined that a Local 6285 union fund would be invested in the new Community Fund to assist retirees in desperate need of benefit coverage.
"These investments will help to ensure the Community Fund can provide badly needed benefits as well as dignity to retirees who have been victimized by the developments of the last few years," Warren said.
SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)