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Unionized employees at the Globe and Mail could be on strike by midnight Wednesday over disputes with the newspaper around pensions, benefits and a gender wage gap.

The 320 employees, who are members of Unifor Local 87-M, include reporters, editors, circulation, operations and advertising sales staff. They gave the bargaining committee a 94 per cent strike mandate two weeks ago.

The union is asking for the newspaper to move all unionized employees into a multi-employer defined benefit pension plan. Currently, 57 per cent of the newspaper’s employees are in a single-employer DB plan, 36 per cent are in a defined contribution plan and seven per cent don’t belong to an employer-sponsored retirement plan at all.

Read: Unionized Bombardier staff secure pension, dental benefits improvements

“We hope to reach a deal, however we have legitimate concerns about our pensions and wages and other issues that the company is simply ignoring,” said John Daly, Globe unit chair and a writer for Report on Business magazine, in a press release.

According to the union, the Globe and Mail is also seeking an increase in benefits premiums and a two-year wage freeze. It’s also claiming the newspaper has declined to discuss the union’s proposals to help women escape domestic abuse.

“How can the Globe maintain its credibility as a newspaper when it won’t protect employees living with domestic violence?” said Paul Morse, president of Unifor Local 87-M.

As well, the union is calling on the newspaper to end a pay gap between male and female staffers. “There is no excuse for a pay gap between women and men at a newspaper that considers itself Canada’s paper of record,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor’s national president.

Read: Unions continue effort to convert multi-employer pension to target-benefit plan

Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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