Sisters and Brothers:
On May 13, 2013 management at the Richmond IKEA locked out the nearly 350 members of Teamsters 213 who work at that location.
IKEA has shown its determination to succeed and a willingness to break the Labour Law, having already been found in violation of the Labour Code provisions, preventing the use of replacement workers.
IKEA is not a franchised company. The Richmond and Coquitlam IKEA locations are both owned by the parent company, whose owners are among the wealthiest 100 families in the world.
I am writing today to make it be clear that customers choosing to patronize the Coquitlam location, while the strike is on at the Richmond location, are assisting the company in breaking the strike.
The issue is the imposition of a tiered wage structure. Despite the Richmond location being highly profitable, management is seeking to impose significant wage cuts on the majority of its work force. Five years ago, the Teamsters fought the tiered wage structure and won.
Tiered wage structures such as the one proposed by IKEA poison work sites, creating resentment between co-workers. Moreover, they contribute to the part-timing of work, as management seeks to take advantage of the new, lower wage categories.
Please inform your members of this ongoing dispute and ask them to not patronize either BC IKEA location until the dispute is resolved fairly and to the satisfaction of the Teamsters and its IKEA members.
I will notify you if the dispute changes significantly or a settlement is reached.
President, BC Federation of Labour