Port Coquitlam workers fired for allegedly stealing copper file grievance
Seven Port Coquitlam city workers who were fired for allegedly stealing and selling copper pipes are fighting to get their jobs back.
CUPE Local 498, the union that represents the workers, said grievances were filed against the city the same day the employees were fired.
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“We filed grievances based on the union’s decision that the terminations were unjustified,” said CUPE 498 second vice president Ron Narayan.
“Based on the statements from the employees and the evidence that the city had at that point, that’s when the decision was made that the decision to terminate was unjust.”
The City of Port Coquitlam alleges that the seven employees, all in the public works department, stole the copper over the course of a decade in a “highly-coordinated” operation.
The actual value of the material is unknown, but the city claims the workers sold it illegally for more than $75,000.
The individual participants allegedly pocketed between $100 and $10,000 for their part in the scheme, the city claims.
It also claims the workers were fired for cause, meaning they will not receive severance.
Coquitlam RCMP says it has taken over the investigation.
None of the claims have been proven in court.
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