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BARRIE – Locked out workers are questioning why the County of Simcoe is spending tens of thousands of dollars for a Toronto security company to videotape and monitor picket lines.

They say they need security guards to protect the assets of the corporation, but who are they protecting the county from?” asks Russell Nicholson, the acting president of CUPE Local 3110, one of two locals that represent the locked out workers. “Almost 90 per cent of our pickets are older women. What threat do they think they pose? The true reason for spending all this money is to try to intimidate county employees.”

The County has hired over 35 security guards to cover shifts 24 hours a day and seven days a week. “Is this what ratepayers pay taxes for?” says Robert Penrose, President of CUPE Local 2710. “We figure this is costing taxpayers $50,000 a week. That money could be put to better use.”

CUPE says that labour relations between the union and the county have deteriorated dramatically since the county hired an outside consultant. “This is one more example of the type of intimidation the county now endorses,” says Penrose. “They would rather pay wages to hired heavyweights than agree to a just contract for dedicated county employees.”


Rob Penrose, President, Local 2710
705-770-4219 or 705-730-0327
Denzil D’Souza, Staff Representative
705-722-7387 or 416-919-8547
Shannon McManus, CUPE Communications
416-292-3999 or 416-766-3252