Union democracy… 81% of JBS members vote in favor of new union contract!

After three days of voting, an overwhelming 81% of JBS union members have voted to accept the Company’s offer of settlement and ratify a new union contract.

The offer, which has been described as “unprecedented” by Union Bargaining Committee members, contains major gains that JBS workers fought for, and won in record time, through their union.

Victories include:

  • An immediate $3.40 per hour retroactive wage increase for Production workers
  • An immediate $2.55 per hour retroactive wage increase for Maintenance workers
  • Plus big wage increases in each year of the contract (a total of $6.15 for Production and Rendering, $4.95 for Maintenance)
  • Earlier access to your $700 COVID bonus
  • New rules to stop harassment from bad JBS bosses and get you the respect and representation you deserve
  • A new, company-paid fund to empower and educate JBS workers on their rights
  • A new process to offer hope for the improvement of the scheduling of breaks
  • Increased bereavement leave from 3 days to 4 days
  • New protections for temporary foreign workers at JBS
  • Help for JBS workers facing domestic violence at home
  • Better health and safety standards at the Plant

“This is what being part of a strong union is all about,” said UFCW Local 401 Secretary Treasurer Richelle Stewart. “Non-unionized workers don’t get to vote on the terms and conditions of their employment, and they are all alone in trying to secure the sorts of gains our members will enjoy in this contract. Those efforts are almost always unsuccessful.”

By standing strong together through their union, JBS workers have democratically secured a groundbreaking victory. This new union contract sets a new standard for meatpacking workers in North America.

The new union contract also stands to directly benefit the Town of Brooks.

Studies consistently show that money workers receive in wage increases are largely re-invested in their local economies. By securing significant wage increases for JBS workers, this new union contract will generate increased spending at local businesses as JBS workers use their additional resources on things like:

  • Groceries
  • Fuel and transportation
  • Rent and mortgages
  • Household goods
  • Entertainment
  • And many other goods and services in Brooks

“This new union contract demonstrates how effective unions are at building better workplaces and a better world,” said Union President Thomas Hesse. “I could not be happier that our gains from bargaining will improve the lives of our members and bolster the local economy of Brooks, AB. This really is a win/win situation.” 

The six-year deal will help boost the local economy in this difficult time and for years into the future, representing a win for all working people in Brooks.