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CORNWALL, Ont. – While CUPE Local 3251 – PARA are on strike to achieve the average provincial salary, the City of Cornwall has voted to spend $200,000 for a new city slogan.

How insensitive can they be?” asked Bob Manny of CUPE. “This is just another example of their lack of respect for the citizens they represent and the workers they employ.

I have a slogan for them: Cornwall – City of disrespect for citizens, employees, and visitors.

Manny continued: “The cost of bringing the paramedics of Glengarry, Stormont and Dundas in line with the average wage across the province is less than the money they have just decided to spend on getting a new slogan for the City of Cornwall. What are the priorities of the mayor and council? Certainly NOT the safety of the residents or the well-being of their employees.”

CUPE Local 3251 – PARA are the paramedics who work in life and death situations and under tremendous stress. They work more than 40 hours a week, often in 12 hour shifts, and all they are asking is a fair wage settlement. The difference between what the City of Cornwall (representing cities Alexandria and Finch and the counties listed above, had no power to assist with the negotiations) and what the life-saving paramedics want is a low 1.5 per cent. On Friday, February 23, the paramedics voted 97 per cent not to ratify the City of Cornwall’s final offer.

On Monday, the first day of our strike, the mayor of Cornwall was quoted in the Cornwall Standard Freeholder as saying he did not want our paramedics to earn as much as the provincial average,” said Manny. “How far below par can they go? All the Paramedics are asking for is parity with their workers elsewhere.

When election time rolls around I certainly hope the citizens of Cornwall remember what was REALLY important to their elected representatives, and that the counties can find a way to ensure they have a vote in contract negotiations,” Manny concluded. “This is a truly absurd situation.”

For further information, please contact:

Bob Manny
CUPE National Representative
(613) 933-5515

Wendy Forbes
Communications Representative
(416) 892-8716