HD Mining extends olive branch to unions in open letter

HD Mining, the Canadian coal miner at the center of controversy relating to the recruitment of foreign workers in lieu of local hires, has requested that unions drop their legal action and engage in negotiations.

News1130 reports that Chinese-owned HD Mining issued an open letter to the International Union of Operating Engineers and the Construction and Specialized Workers Union, imploring both to withdraw their legal challenge in order to meet at a negotiating table outside the court.

The two unions filed a case with Canada's Federal Court towards the end of last year, objecting to the 201 temporary foreign worker permits obtaining by HD Mining for its coal mine in the north of British Columbia.

According to the unions HD Mining failed to put sufficient effort into recruiting Canadian nationals before attempting to import miners from China.

In the letter HD Mining explains that the temporary foreign employees will be used for exploration work.

In addition to requesting that the unions drop their court case, it also asks for input from the unions with respect to the training of Canadian nationals, and undertakes to consult the unions prior to applying for further foreign worker permits.