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Outraged by the Tremblay administration’s refusal to institute salary adjustments as mandated by the Pay Equity Act, hundreds of white-collar workers represented by the Syndicat des fonctionnaires municipaux de Montréal (CUPE-FTQ), demonstrated outside City Hall on June 20.

The union members voiced their indignation over the decision of the City of Montreal to deprive them of their due. Opposing the employer’s decision, the Pay Equity Committee and the union filed a dispute and a complaint with the Pay Equity Commission, which is now investigating the case.

Despite the appeals, women are still angry that the largest city in Quebec is maintaining an approach that discriminates against those who started working in 2006, 2007 and 2008 and ensuring that they will not receive any salary adjustment until 2010, 2011 and 2012.

We are dealing with a serious lack of knowledge of the Pay Equity Act,” said Monique Côté, union president. “Mr. Tremblay would prefer to wait until the Commission tells him what he must do, instead of simply applying the pay equity adjustments by level, as clearly outlined on the Commission’s website. This sends the message that under his administration, we can maintain wage discrimination indefinitely! The Mayor must know that these women have been waiting since 2001. Why doesn’t he just act?” 

On December 23, 2010, following an intensive period of concerted effort and in accordance with the Pay Equity Act, the Pay Equity Commission determined that nearly 60 per cent of the 400 female-dominated jobs, affecting nearly 4,500 white-collar workers, would receive salary adjustments. Faced with the employer’s refusal to institute salary levels adjustments as provided by law, the union filed a dispute with the Commission in April.