This new agreement provides, in particular, salary increases of 13 per cent over six years. Improvements to working conditions have also been achieved, particularly for temporary employees. Many grievances were also settled, and the parties reviewed the organization of work. Work previously done by subcontractors will be assigned to the blue-collar workers going forward, which has given the union optimism for the future.
“The final settlement is satisfactory, especially since the employer had a lot of demands. We think everyone, from the unionized members to the citizens of Laval, came out a winner with this agreement,” said Martin Gagnon, President of CUPE 4545.
This round of negotiations was difficult. Targeted strike days resulted in the complete closure of eight arenas in the city over two weekends. Assistance from a Ministry of Labour conciliator was needed to arrive at a negotiated settlement.
“Negotiations were tight right up until the end. Given the circumstances, the discipline and tremendous solidarity of the members of local CUPE 4545 must be underscored along with the extraordinary devotion of the union’s bargaining committee to achieve that result,” said Roger Bazinet, CUPE union representative.