Unifor Local 3019 and Nyrstar NV have put pen to paper.

The two parties voted overwhelmingly to ratify a labour agreement, which will send hundreds of union miners back to work at Myra Falls.

Former Unifor president Bill Garton calls the deal “a big thing” and is happy to have the sector begin to rebound on the North Island.

“Most families want to be together and it (the deal) helps keep alot of our workers here, the money it brings into the town too.”

Garton notes the deal provides something the union is desperately seeking: financial security.

“There’s a big change in our pension plan. It’ll be changing from a guaranteed amount to a guaranteed contribution.”

Despite that, it’s the most significant part of the deal that thrills Garton.

“It’s all about getting to a position to where we can start up.”

“This deal is going to help us move forward.”