Canadian Shop Manager Calls out Insurer for 'Bully Tactics'

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May 25, 2021An impasse between a provincial insurance company and two Manitoba, Canada, automotive associations has led a body shop manager to say the insurer is using "bully tactics."

Manitoba Public Insurance in March announced it would stop negotiating with the Manitoba Motor Dealers Association and the Automotive Trades Association about a new compensation agreement, The Carillon reports.

Jesse Loewen, general manager of Loewen Body Shop, told the publication his body shops in Manitoba are paid the second lowest rates in Canada, and have not seen an increase since 2017, while MPI's staffer salaries have increased 13.4 percent.

The insurer has argued that paying shops more would increase insurance rates, the story says.

"Now to have a government-owned monopoly walk away from negotiations, using bully tactics on our membership, and introduce a contract that could result in more closures of shops, loss of service and choice is disheartening and shameful and not the way to treat a business partner," Loewen says in a press release from the two associations, as reported in the story.

Loewen told the Carillon that MP! claims account for 95 percent of his shops' work.

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