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ELLIOT LAKE, Ont. – Local 170 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), representing 45 inside and outside municipal workers in the City of Elliot Lake, has asked the Ministry of Labour to assign a conciliation officer to help mediate negotiations to avert a strike or lockout that would hurt the community.

We have been trying to negotiate a fair collective agreement with the City of Elliot Lake, but on some items we are still very far apart,” said Rick Bull, CUPE Local 170 president. “It seems like management and City Council believe the burden of the hard times our community has faced should be borne by our members and that we should make even more sacrifices. The difficulty is we have made sacrifices like all the residents in our community, and we are just trying to achieve a fair contract that protects public services.”

CUPE members in Elliot Lake provide all office, clerical, permits, by-law enforcement, building inspections, account services, airport services, pool, arena and public works services, including road maintenance, snow removal, parks and recreation, water and wastewater and other important public services.

Our members are dedicated public servants, and we are your neighbours, friends and family – we live and work in Elliot Lake to make the community better,” said Bull. “We want to assure residents that we are doing everything we can to achieve a negotiated collective agreement, without any disruption in services.”

Other surrounding communities have been able to settle fair contracts for their municipal workers,” said Robin Silverman, CUPE National Representative. “Our members just want to be treated fairly, and that’s why they voted 100 per cent in favour of a strike if all else fails. We will enter conciliation talks on October 29 with a clear intention to negotiate a settlement. We are asking residents to contact the mayor and councillors to make sure they instruct city negotiators to do the same.”

For further information, please contact:

Rick Bull
President of CUPE 170
705-261-0761 (cell)

Robin Silverman
CUPE National Representative
705-206-8218 (cell)