TORONTO — Hundreds of families could see their workplace child care shut down at Kids and Company locations in Toronto and Ottawa at 12:01 a.m., Thursday, November 29.
About 120 early childhood educators and assistants, members of CUPE 4823, have been trying for almost a year to negotiate a first contract with the company, one of the country’s largest private, for-profit child care providers.
“We hope we can reach a settlement without having to take job action,” said CUPE National Representative Jim Morrison. “However, these workers are also determined to stand up for what is right — a fair first contract that provides them with a competitive wage, pension and compensation when they are injured on the job.”
Without those conditions, he said, the union believes that the ability of child care workers to provide quality care is compromised by high staff turnover, violations of regulated staff-to-child ratios and other problems related to health and safety.
“Kids and Company has been expanding its business at a rapid pace,” Morrison said. “We’re asking them to put quality first. If they want to expand, they should do it on a solid foundation of providing high quality child care.”
While Kids and Company recently levied increases ranging from 3% to 5% on the fees it charges corporate clients and families, staff saw a wage increase of only 1% or roughly 11 cents an hour, he said.
The parties are scheduled to return to mediation on November 26 and 27.
For more information, contact:
Jim Morrison, CUPE National Representative, 905-243-1483
Pat Daley, CUPE Communications, 416-616-6142