March 24, 2014 3:00 PM, EDT

British Columbia Introduces Back-to-Work Legislation for Port of Vancouver Trucker Strike

Back-to-work legislation has been introduced by the British Columbia government for drayage truckers on strike at Port Metro Vancouver, Canada’s largest port.

The bill calls for “a 90-day cooling off period for 250 truckers who are members of Unifor,” Canada’s Ministry of Transportation said in a statement.

The legislation includes penalties of up to $400 per day for workers and $10,000 per day for the union or employer for contravening the legislation, the Canadian Press reported.

Striking truckers represented by Unifor, Canada’s largest labor union, previously said in a statement that the legislation “will only make matters worse” in the port dispute.

“A negotiated settlement is the only sustainable solution,” said Paul Johal, president of Unifor-Vancouver Container Truckers Association, which set up pickets March 10 after protests that began at the port by nonunionized drayage truckers Feb. 26.

About 2,000 trucks move items to and from the port, which handled 135 million tons of cargo in 2013, according to its website.