Peel, ON - As union negotiators prepare for a critical meeting with the Children’s Aid Society of the Region of Peel (Peel CAS) tomorrow, the president of Local 4914 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE 4914) today charged that Peel CAS appears more interested in intimidation than negotiation.
“We were shocked to learn last week that Peel CAS has been contacting former staff members to offer them extremely large sums of money to cross picket lines in the event of lockout or strike,” said Sonia Yung, President of CUPE 4914, which represents, frontline administrative and support workers at Peel CAS.
Since 2013, unionized Peel CAS employees have seen their wages eroded by inflation. During the same period, Peel CAS Chief Executive Officer Rav Bains enjoyed a whopping 24 per cent wage increase.
“The amounts of money on offer are far in excess of what it would take to resolve any and all outstanding issues between Peel CAS and the union. If Peel CAS devoted as much time, energy and money into resolving this dispute as they have into trying to intimidate our members, we would have settled this long ago,” said Yung.
Members of CUPE 4914 have been without a collective agreement since March 31. Negotiators for the union and Peel CAS are scheduled to meet tomorrow in an effort to resolve all outstanding issues in advance of a lockout or strike deadline of 12:01 a.m., Saturday, September 17.
“Our goals in this round of bargaining have been extremely reasonable – a better, safer working environment, modest benefit and wage improvements. We’re certainly not looking for the massive sums of money Peel CAS is prepared to throw at strikebreakers, or even the double-digit wage increases we’ve seen managers get in recent years,” said Yung.
“Let’s be clear – under the guise of ‘contingency plans,’ Peel CAS is proposing to spend vast sums of money to deploy strikebreakers who don’t have the necessary training required by law to do the job. That’s more than troubling. It’s scandalous,” said Yung.
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CUPE 4914 President