IAM gains new members at Arbutus

C/O  frank  8 May, 2024 IAMAW Canada

April 29, 2024

Early December 2023, workers from multiple locations at Arbutus RV on Vancouver Island contacted the IAM seeking representation. IAM District 250 Business Representative John Humphrey met with some of the workers over the following weeks to hear their concerns and how the IAM could represent them. Arbutus RV has more than 90 workers at seven locations on Vancouver Island.

When the company heard there was high interest in having a union, they started to have townhall meetings in all locations, stressing that they were a small family-run business, and they didn’t need a Union and they could come talk to them anytime. This is standard strategy for companies who don’t want their workers to join a union.

Humphrey consulted with DL250 Organiser Al Cyr and they decided on a strategy to meet with the workers at one particular location.  After the meeting, both Humphrey and Cyr decided to expand their visits to other locations and leaflet them with information about how the IAM could better their working lives.

The Company, knowing a union drive was in full-swing, suddenly announced a new pay increase and engaged in an anti-union campaign. Cyr and Humphrey countered by informing the workers that the pay raise was simply because of the IAM presence and asking them to imagine what it would be like once they had a union contract.

The Arbutus workers continued to sign membership cards with enough being signed to file for certification on 11 April, 2024. Despite employer resistance, the vote went ahead with the IAM being the clear winner! The IAM welcomes the workers as new members at Arbutus RV in Parksville and Merville B.C.

Business Representative Al Cyr thanked the inside committee for their deep commitment to see this through as well as Business Representative Humphrey, who oversaw the whole process from start to finish. Dates for bargaining a contract will be discussed this week.

Arbutus RV sells new and used recreational vehicles across Vancouver Island. The new members will join IAM Local Lodge 456.


For more information:
John Humphrey,
IAM District 250 Business Representative