TORONTO – The City of Toronto has applied for conciliation with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 79, the union that represents city employees, even though the parties have yet to begin negotiations.
“This is a highly unusual move designed to speed up the bargaining process,” says Ann Dembinski, the president of CUPE Local 79. “Usually, one of the parties files for conciliation after both sides have tried to settle as many issues as possible at the bargaining table. The City of Toronto is filing for conciliation before any face-to-face negotiations have taken place and that is not conducive to a healthy bargaining climate.”
During conciliation, the union or the employer can apply for a “no board” report at any time, which starts the countdown to a strike or lockout deadline.
“CUPE remains committed to negotiating collective agreements for our members despite the City’s unilateral action,” says Dembinski.
The Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 79 represents 17,000 employees of the City of Toronto.
Shannon McManus, CUPE Communications
416-292-3999 or 416-766-3252