Representatives of CUPE 4545, the union representing Laval outside workers, stormed out of the eighth bargaining session to renew the collective agreement of the 850 outside workers, which had expired on December 31, 2021.
“Once again, the employer’s representatives turned a deaf ear to the demands put forth by the workers. We needed a gesture of openness to jumpstart our trust in our counterparts, but it didn’t happen,” fumed Louis-Pierre Plourde, president of CUPE 4545.
Talks between the City of Laval and the union have been stalled for several months. On September 26, the employer shelved a pre-arbitration mediation session to deal with the some thousand or so grievances which have been impacting the day-to-day activities of Laval’s outside workers for several years.
“Respect for outside workers, recognition of our expertise, an improved working environment and the development of a relationship of trust are not part of the objectives sought by employees of the labour relations department. At present, in addition to not responding to our demands, they are not resolving grievances and needlessly pushing back deadlines. In the end, the citizens of Laval are the ones who end up on the short end,” added Plourde.
On April 26, outside workers voted 96% in favour of a mandate calling for pressure tactics up to and including strike action at an opportune time. In the coming days, the union will be pursuing pressure tactics and will inform the Ministry of Labour to establish what essential services will be in the event of a strike.