Home Workplace News Unifor critical of Bell’s handling of terminations via virtual group meetings, says union reps were muted

Unifor critical of Bell’s handling of terminations via virtual group meetings, says union reps were muted

by HR Law Canada

Unifor is criticizing the way Bell is handling the termination of workers. The union said that “hundreds” of its members were terminated on virtual group meetings on March 20.

“These members have been living in dread of a meeting invite to find out they’ve lost their job since Bell announced the termination of thousands of jobs almost six weeks ago,” said Unifor National President Lana Payne.

“The truth is Bell picked a number of heads to roll so it could increase its dividend payout without an actual plan on which jobs and which workers would be eliminated so the terminations are cruelly dragged out.”

Unifor represents more than 19,000 telecommunications workers at BCE and its subsidiaries.

On March 20, the union said notification began to more than 400 telco members in the Bell Clerical Bargaining Unit to to inform them that they are being declared ‘surplus’ with some possibly eligible for a retirement incentive.

“In one short 10-minute virtual meeting held this morning, Christopher Corsi, Bell’s Human Resources and Labour Relations manager, read a notice, without allowing members or the union the opportunity to unmute to ask questions,” Unifor said in a press release.

The union said that, after it expressed outrage, Bell modified its approach for upcoming meetings. Union representatives will be identified and people on the group calls will have the ability to unmute to ask questions, it said.

“Our members, who have devoted years of service to this telecoms and media giant, are being repaid with pink slips,” said Unifor Quebec Director Daniel Cloutier. “If that’s not beyond shameful, I don’t know what is.”

The union launched its “Shame on Bell” campaign in response to last month’s announcement that BCE is callously eliminating 4,800 jobs, including 800 Unifor members in telco and media.

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