After 86 years, Williams Moving and Storage files for bankruptcy

VANCOUVER – After being in business for 86 years, Williams Moving and Storage has filed for bankruptcy.

Unifor Local 114, which represents the employees in B.C. and Alberta, says both union and non-union workers will likely be shorted their last pay cheques and all accumulated banked hours, such as vacation pay, will not be paid out.

However, the company is filing notice under a section of the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, which grants members a super priority for the first $3,000 they are owed in wages and earned vacation. Union representatives will be meeting with the company on Thursday to figure out the next steps.

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On Wednesday, the company called for a 3 p.m. meeting and conference call for all employees to announce the immediate closure of the company.

The Company notice said: “…Williams has been trading unprofitably for a period of time and has not been able to restructure appropriately in the current economic and competitive environment. Accordingly, all trade and operations will cease as at [sic] January 21, 2015.”
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All its assets will be sold at auction.

“This is a very stressful and sickening time for our members and their families who have just found out that their jobs and benefits are gone,” says Unifor Local 411 in a release.

There are reports employees were locked out after the announcement was made and some could not get their personal belongings.

NOTE: Williams Moving & Storage (Cranbrook) Ltd., which includes Cranbrook and Lethbridge branches, is not affected by this news. They remain open and operating.

More to come.

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