The City of Laval’s 750 blue collar workers recently voted 95% in favour of a strike and will take strike action this weekend and next.
The union gave strike notice to the labour tribunal on October 17, as required under the Québec Labour Code.
The first phase of this overtime strike will start at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, October 28 and end at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, October 29. The second phase will start at 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, November 4 and end at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, November 5.
The strikes will close four municipal arenas. Employees at the Nature Centre will strike from 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, October 28 to 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, October 29.
The last collective agreement expired in January 2016, and 30 bargaining sessions have been held since then with no real progress. Even after 13 meetings with a mediator, the parties have been unable to reach an agreement. The union has been highly critical of the offers the City has brought to the table.
“We want to be treated the same as the workers the City has signed agreements with during the last few months,” said CUPE 4545 vice-president Stéphane Lavoie. “We have made progress on working conditions, but the City keeps adding new demands. They’re trying to butcher our agreement, but we’re not going to let them.”
The unionized workers intend to express their dissatisfaction peacefully and lawfully.
Laval’s 750 blue collar workers are members of Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 4545. They provide public services as road workers and flaggers, water, sewage and snow removal workers, and workers at arenas, parks and dry materials dumps. They also include mechanics, building maintenance workers, groundskeepers and sanitary maintenance workers.