Canadian Labour Dispute Dogs Carnival CEO at Shareholders' Meeting

 Canadian Labour Dispute Dogs Carnival CEO at Shareholders' Meeting  NEW YORK, April 17, 2014 /CNW/ - Carnival Corporation's annual shareholders  meeting today was overshadowed by concerns over CEO Arnold Donald's role in a  Canadian labour dispute.  Confronted with repeated questions from shareholders, Donald was forced to  address his role in an eight-month strike at the Toronto factory of  manufacturing giant Crown Holdings.  Donald is a key member of the board of directors at Crown Holdings, one of the  world's largest producers of beer cans and other beverage and food containers.  Crown Holdings provoked a strike at its Toronto factory last September by  demanding huge concessions to employees' wages, pensions and benefits. Crown  has prolonged the strike for eight months with demands such as a two-tier job  structure that would permanently relegate young workers to low-wage survival  jobs.  In its last offer which was voted down almost unanimously, Crown offered few  assurances that workers could return to their jobs after agreeing to end the  strike.  "Rather than trying to come to a reasonable compromise, Crown decided to throw  gasoline on the fire it started," said Lawrence Hay of the United Steelworkers  (USW), which represents the Toronto employees.  As a key director of Crown Holdings, Arnold Donald cannot deny his role and  responsibility in the company's attack on workers' livelihoods, Carnival  Corporation shareholders heard during today's annual meeting.  Dozens of Toronto strikers demonstrated outside the Four Seasons Hotel as  their labour dispute was discussed inside by Carnival executives and  shareholders.  Shareholders questioned Donald's role in the Crown Holdings strike in Canada,  despite an attempt by Carnival Corporation Chairman Micky Arison to shut down  the questions.  Shareholders noted that Donald's role in the Canadian strike has led to calls  for a boycott of Carnival cruises that have been endorsed by seniors and  labour groups representing 1.5 million members in Canada.  A Carnival shareholder suggested Donald should reconsider his position as a  director of Crown Holdings, arguing it has become a "distraction." While  acknowledging the distraction, Donald indicated he intends to retain his  position on the Crown Holdings board.  After fielding repeated questions, Donald offered to meet with the Canadian  workers following the Carnival shareholders' meeting. USW members accepted and  urged Donald to use his influence to bring about a negotiated settlement of  the labour dispute.  "Mr. Donald said he and other Crown Holdings directors are not fully aware of  all the issues in the labour dispute at Crown's Toronto operations, so we are  ensuring he is well-informed," said Hay.  "Mr. Donald has pledged to bring our concerns to the attention of Crown  executives," he said. "Crown's executives and directors must accept their role  in this unnecessary labour dispute and their responsibility to foster a fair  settlement."    SOURCE  United Steelworkers (USW)  Lawrence Hay, USW Staff Representative, 416-807-8792, lhay@usw.ca; Carolyn  Egan, Steelworkers Toronto Area Council, 416-806-7985; Joe Drexler, USW  Strategic Campaigns, 416-544-6009, 416-434-7907, jdrexler@usw.ca; Bob  Gallagher, USW Communications, 416-544-5966, 416-434-2221, bgallagher@usw.ca  To view this news release in HTML formatting, please use the following URL:  http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/April2014/17/c2786.html  CO: United Steelworkers (USW) ST: New York NI: LABOR  
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