SYDENHAM, Ont. Municipal workers in the Township of South Frontenac are set to go on strike as early as March 2nd if mediation talks between the Township and Local 4336 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) fail to reach an agreement. The workers voted 100% in favour of a strike over wage parity.
Our members are united to fight for a fair contract, said Trevor Greene, president of CUPE Local 4336. Some of our members are working side by side with co-workers doing the same job, for the same number of hours, but getting paid 70% less thats blatantly unfair.
At issue are five outside workers who are classified as part-time workers, even though they have been working full-time for as long as five years. These workers are doing the same job as full-time workers, but they are paid significantly less and do not receive any benefits. Equal pay for equal work is a fundamental principle of the union movement, and we are committed to winning this fight for our members, said Greene.
The 29 full-time and part-time inside and outside municipal workers include public works staff and administration staff. Their last contract expired March 31st, 2004. The workers rejected the employers offer on January 10. At a conciliation meeting on February 7th, the employer showed no flexibility on the outstanding issue, triggering a legal strike deadline of 12:01 am on March 2nd.
Final mediation talks scheduled for February 28th are seen as a last chance to avoid a strike. We urge councillors to get involved and make sure management rectifies this unfair situation, otherwise, we will have no choice but to go on strike, said Greene.
For further information, please contact:
Trevor Greene, President, CUPE Local 4336 - 613-374-5352
Cheri Dobbs, CUPE National Rep. - 613-539-4806 cell
James Chai, CUPE Communications - 416-292-3999