Two locals of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) in contract negotiations with the City of Toronto today released public opinion research showing strong public support for frontline workers’ goals in bargaining.

The survey of Toronto residents’ views on the city’s management and delivery of programs and services was conducted by Viewpoints Research, on behalf of CUPE Local 79 and TCEUCUPE Local 416. The two unions, representing about 28,000 frontline workers, are trying to negotiate new contracts, but have been confronted by the city’s aggressive demands and public threats of service disruptions.

“We are gratified by the support shown in these results,” said Tim Maguire, President of Local 79. “But to be honest, we’re not surprised: we connect with Toronto residents every day, and we know how much they value the services we deliver.”

“Yesterday, we tabled a proposal that we see as the framework for negotiated settlements that will provide good, stable jobs, and deliver great services. But we need the city to be a willing partner, and stop the threats,” said Maguire.

Key findings:

  • Two-thirds of respondents agree it’s fair frontline city workers want to negotiate secure, stable work with no cuts to benefits;
  • 4 in 5 respondents agree the City of Toronto should be a leader in providing good, stable jobs;
  • Almost 60 per cent prefer Mayor John Tory to work hand-in-hand with frontline workers to enhance and protect city services, rather than taking them on to cut costs.

Other findings:

  • Almost 9 in 10 respondents agree good, stable jobs enhance communities and local economies;
  • 4 in 5 respondents also agree City of Toronto employees should be able to rely on minimum hours;
  • 3 in 4 feel the city should ensure good, stable jobs for its employees;
  • Two-thirds of respondents agree part-time workers should have benefits, minimum hours.

“Our members are committed to doing their best, every day. We know Toronto residents expect and deserve great services,” said Matt Alloway, spokesperson for Local 416. “These results show most Toronto residents understand there is a link between the stability of frontline workers’ jobs, and the quality and stability of the services they deliver.”

The online survey of 1,000 respondents was conducted February 9-12. Copies of the Viewpoints polling presentation are available upon request.


For more information, please contact:

Katrina Miller, 647-272-5024
Cim Nunn, 416-627-7695
Kevin Wilson, 416-821-6641