Oceanex unionized workers upset about junior hire

Josh Pennell Josh.pennell@thetelegram.com
Published on April 29, 2014

A group of disgruntled Oceanex employees are demonstrating on Water Street in St. John’s today, saying senior members of Local 1953 of the Longshoreman’s Protective Union were treated unfairly.

Michael Yetman is the acting president of Local 1953.

“This is not a walkout or a wildcat strike or anything like that,” he told The Telegram Tuesday, calling it a “demonstration of membership senority.”

Yetman says there was a recent posting for foremen’s positions that were given to two junior union members, something he contends  s not right when they have members with more than 30 years’ experience on all manner of boats.

Yetman said he has heard that the two younger men who were offered the jobs have since turned them down.

“They’re after withdrawing their application — but the morality of it, right? That they overlooked us people with 30 years.”

The union is meeting with Oceanex management today at 3 p.m. Yetman says the union hopes the employer will take senority into consideration.