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GREAT SUDBURY CUPE Ontario President Sid Ryan says he is willing to meet with Greater Sudbury Mayor David Courtemanche today, but only if no strings or pre-conditions are attached. A planned boycott of Greater Sudbury by the Ontario Federation of Labour and affiliated unions is likely to proceed, warns CUPE.

The mayor says he will only meet with me if its a one-on-one meeting, with no local representative, says Ryan. He has also attached conditions, including a promise that our local members will vote on managements last offer including the concession of eliminating health care benefits for retired workers. Thats a non-starter.

CUPE has offered several solutions to end the crisis, including immediate cost savings to ratepayers. The hydro board has rejected them all, continuing to demand the elimination of health care benefits for future retired workers, even though their demands will not have any impact on benefit costs for at least 20 years when new workers start to retire.

The OFL gave a weeks notice before asking affiliates to boycott Greater Sudbury over this councils deliberate attack on seniors, says Wyman MacKinnon, CUPE 4705 president, representing 85 hydro workers on strike since June 19th. Unless the mayor is willing to meet with us in an open and honest attempt to solve the crisis, the boycott will unfortunately have to proceed.

CUPE has already announced that an ambulance conference planned for Sudbury will move to another community if the boycott is called. Union leaders and supporters are gathering for a rally today at City Hall, Tom Davies Square, at 6:00 p.m.


For further information, please contact:
Wyman MacKinnon
President, CUPE 4705
705-560-4705 (office)
705-669-8526 (cell)

Dennis Burke
CUPE National Rep.
705-674-7557 (office)
705-669-9463 (cell)

Robert Lamoureux
CUPE Communications