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Union work stoppage and your pension

What happens if your union goes on strike, or your employer initiates a lockout? Learn more here so you can feel confident you have the right information.

Your employer and labour union participate in collective bargaining every few years. Depending on how negotiations unfold, your union or employer may initiate work stoppage such as a strike or lockout. If this happens, you may wonder what it means for your pension.

If your labour union directs you to take part in a work stoppage event like a picket line, or your employer locks you out, you won’t accrue pensionable service or make contributions for the hours you aren’t working for the employer. Also, your employer won’t contribute to your pension for the hours you do not work.

A work stoppage is not an approved leave of absence. This means you cannot buy back the missed service or the employer’s portion of the missed service. Read Learn about gaps in service to learn more.

Important: If you go on a pre-approved leave, or are already on one (e.g., LTD, STIIP or vacation) during a work stoppage, your service, pension contributions and employer contributions will not be affected. If the work stoppage is ongoing when you return from leave, your service, pension contributions and employer contributions will stop.