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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - June 5, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta See-saw packing dispute slices Lethbridge meat processing The see-saw strike-lockout dispute in the Alberta meat packing industry has slashed meat processing by 70 per cent in Lethbridge. Pickets were out at the two major city plants today, Swift Canadian and Canada Packers. The plants have locked out 215 members of the Canadian Food and Allied Workers Union, 85 at Swift's and 130 at Canada Packers. The employees could vote tonight on the latest offer from the combined bargaining team for Burns, Swift's and Canada Packers. About employees have been locked out in the province. The companies have threatened to lock out employees across Canada if a settlement is not reached within a week. A union policy committee accepted a settlement and withdrew its strike notice Monday. But Burns president A. E. Childs said the firms had experienced negative votes on tentative agreements before and would therefore not end the lockout until the membership ratified the settlement. The withdrawn notice of a strike would have been effective today. Canada Packers president W. F. McLean said today it would take about six days to start up plant operations which had been virtually closed in view of the union's Tuesday midnight strike threat. "Because of this, it is not practical to re- open plants until we are assured of continuing Mr. McLean said in a statement. When the union withdrew its strike threat, but with the provision it could be re instated 48 hours after an employee vote, Alberta plants of all three companies were nearly empty, he said. "We expect that a country wide vote by employees on the mediator's recommended settlement will be completed not later than this weekend and, in the event of a favorable vote, the Alberta plants will begin their start up immediately." Mr. McLean said the companies are pleased the union officials accepted the .mediator's recommendation. Lethbridge union officials said today their members probably will turn down the offer. "We have every confidence we're going to be out for a number of days George Fajnor, recording secretary for the Swift's unit of Local 740 of the CFAW, said. It is understood the latest offer is a 62-cent raise in the first year and 55 cents in the second year from a base rate of at Swift's and at Canada Packers. There would be a 1V4 per cent cost of living increase in October of 1975, another statutory holiday on Remembrance day, 1975, and improved pension benefits. In Edmonton, union official Romeo Mathiew said the machinery for membership voting would be put in operation immediately. But the companies' move would be viewed as a "challenge" to the membership. "I think the companies are trying to impress the public, to show if they have a monopoly in this area they process 75 per cent of the nation's he said. "Or maybe they're trying to find justification to raise meat prices after the lockout." Alberta agriculture minister Hugh Homer has indicated the lockout will not result in a meat shortage in the province. Smaller independent packers could increase their production to meet Alberta's needs. Vancouver and Montreal, which receive large daily meat shipments from Alberta, may experience a shortage, however. The Lethbridge Herald VOL. LXVII 147 LETHBRIDGE, ALBERTA, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 5, 1974 10 Cents 52 Pages Schmidt seeking Taber-Warner seat RICK ERVIN photo Horizontal hairstyle Ah, Lethbridge when it blows when you'd rather be almost anywhere else except perhaps Pinch- er Creek. Dena Boras of 2714 4th Ave. S., found her hairstyle suffering Wednesday in winds that gusted up to 52 m.p.h. Despite a brief respite this morning, strong westerly winds were forecast for the city again this afternoon and Thursday for the fifth and sixth days in a row. By AL SCARTH Herald Staff Writer Alberta Social Credit leader Werner Schmidt wil-1 announce his intention to seek the candidacy in the Taber- Warner provincial constituency Friday. Mr. Schmidt, 42" will seek the nomination in a riding being vacated by incumbent Socred MLA Doug Miller. The announcement will be made jointly by Mr. Schmidt and the constituency executive in Milk River. The socred leader has been unsuccessful in two previous tries for a seat in the legislature. Since his upset victory over Bob Clark in the 1973 race for party leadership, the former academic vice- president of the Lethbridge Community College has led the party from outside the house. One of the strongest indications that he would contest Taber-Warner was the timing of his announcement. "It will probably be made within a Mr. Schmidt said earlier in an interview. That enables him to squeeze in ahead of the deadline for nominations in the riding. That deadline, under rules of the Social Credit League, is June 11. The nominating Mayors request finance position WINNIPEG