TORONTO – Local 79 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE Local 79) today announced bargaining with the City of Toronto has reached a stalemate, after the City rejected the union’s latest proposals.
“We have been clear from the outset, we are willing to work together with the City to reach negotiated settlements,” said Tim Maguire, president of CUPE Local 79. “But the City is insisting it wants to undermine job stability, and refuses to provide predictability and minimum of hours of work for part-time frontline workers.”
Maguire said the union’s recent proposals have addressed the City’s demands for savings, with changes to benefits and sick pay, but the City has shown no willingness to meet frontline workers halfway by addressing the two main sticking points.
“The irony here is we have moved to address what the City identified as its primary objective - cost savings. These two remaining issues have no financial implications - they would simply provide City employees with some security and predictability,” Maguire said. “By denying them, the City is telling workers they aren’t valued, and telling Toronto residents the services they depend on do not matter.”
Maguire flatly denied Local 79 had dismissed the mediator. “We were informed last night by the mediator that the City was not prepared to move any further. The Mayor himself has called their offer a final offer - and has taken the step to go over the heads of the Local 79 bargaining team to speak to the members we represent.”
Maguire noted the City’s “take it or leave it” approach did not suggest they were interested in further negotiation. “However, if the City and mediator believe there is value in continuing negotiations, we are certainly interested in pursuing all avenues to achieve collective agreements, and are available at any time.”
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