The ballot count was delayed for more than three months by technical objections from the group’s former bargaining agent, NOWU. Finally, on February 8, the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) ordered the ballots be counted and announced a decisive win for workers wanting to be represented by CUPE.
“We’d pretty much been left on our own for years at Mt. Sinai. We were tired of not having our issues followed up on and not seeing action from NOWU,” said Julian Barkin, a full-time clerk in the medical imaging department. “It was time for a change, and CUPE has done a great job of keeping us informed about our rights throughout the pandemic. We’re all looking forward to seeing what we can achieve now that we’re part of a strong union.”
The roughly 183 full-time clerical workers join more than 100,000 Ontario healthcare workers who are already in CUPE. Over the last two years, CUPE’s hospital membership in the province has grown by several thousand members with the successful service and clerical representation votes at Unity Health Toronto and addition of clerical workers at Campbellford Memorial Hospital.