At meetings in Ontario and Quebec, Bell employees greeted the new CEO’s welcome tour with a clear demand to stop outsourcing at the Canadian telecommunications giant.
In 2019, Bell announced plans to outsource completely the rural high-speed internet service installations covered under Wireless to the Home, work that should be done by unionized technicians, all while taking federal dollars to fund rural internet expansion.
This recent, massive contracting out follows decades of job erosion at Bell and its subsidiaries, but members are mobilizing to demand that Bell stop this practice, and bring back the work.
“Mirko Bibic launched a cross-country tour to hear from workers, and every step of the way the message from employees is clear. Bell, it’s time to change your tactics and respect your workers,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “As a new CEO, Bibic has an opportunity to enact the culture change that Bell so desperately needs. It’s time to stop contracting out good union jobs.”
The calls to bring back work on Wireless to the Home are echoed with demands to stop unnecessary contracting out.
Unifor Local 7 members at Bell MTS in Manitoba recently opened bargaining with a similar demand, fighting back as clerical jobs are outsourced to low-waged workers in Ontario and even off-shored to workers making poverty wages in the Philippines.
“Whether you work at a call centre or on telephone poles, Bell workers are worried about having a good job tomorrow, next week, or next year,” said Renaud Gagné, Unifor Quebec Director. “Generations of Canadians have built careers at this company, I hope Bibic heeds the call to make Bell Canada a good, union employer, not one that seeks to outsource to only pay the lowest possible wages.”
Members at Bell Canada and Bell subsidiaries are encouraged to attend leafletting events outside upcoming Bell Canada National Team Meetings, listed below.
Winnipeg - March 2
2 - 3:30 p.m. RBC Convention Centre, 375 York Ave, Winnipeg, MB R3C 3J3
Calgary - March 3
9 - 10:30 a.m. Studio Bell, 850 4 St SE, Calgary, AB T2G 0L8
Vancouver - March 3
2 - 3:30 p.m. Vancouver Convention Centre, 1055 Canada Pl, Vancouver, BC V6C 0C3
St. John's - March 24
9 - 10:30 a.m. Delta St. John's Hotel and Convention Centre, 120 New Gower St, St. John's, NL A1C 6K4
Halifax - March 24
2:30 to 4 p.m. Halifax Convention Centre, 1650 Argyle St, Halifax, NS B3J 0E6
Saint John - March 25
9:30 to 11 a.m. Saint John Trade & Convention Centre, 1 Market Square, Saint John, NB E2L 4Z6