Come out to the July 11th fundraiser to support the 150 members of the local, striking for better wages and benefits in their second collective agreement
A bitter strike at Torontos Central Neighbourhood House, a multi-service community agency, turned even more ugly this week with the arrest of four CUPE members, one anti-poverty activist, and a national staff representative. The arrests came within hours of the members attempting to occupy a downtown Toronto homeless shelter that management has kept operating throughout the three-week strike.
The shelter is a revenue-maker for the agency, which receives $45 per person per night from the City of Toronto. The employers decision to keep the shelter open, despite suspending all other agency services, has created conflict and tension between the picketers and the shelter residents they work with.
This employer has managed to hit a new low. Its pure exploitation of the shelter residents. Not only are they forcing the homeless to cross a picket line, they are also paying some of them to do work at the shelter normally done by our members. We know they have no clean towels, and sanitary conditions inside are deteriorating.
They are pitting the homeless against low-waged striking workers. No one who is homeless should be forced to cross a picket line so they can have shelter and a bed, said Local 4308 president, Kelly OSullivan, one of those charged.
Strikes, like the one now underway at Central Neighbourhood House, a community agency that provides home support, shelter and youth services, and child care, are becoming increasingly commonplace in the sector. Many community-based social service agencies are in a deficit situation, and in an effort to stay afloat financially, are extracting wage and benefit concessions from already low-paid workers.
Please come out to support the strikers in their just and fair fight against Central Neighbourhood House at the fundraiser.
Friday, July 11th at 8:00 p.m.
537 Parliament Street (North of Carlton)
For more information, please contact:
Kelly OSullivan, President, CUPE Local 4308 (416) 529-9015
Stella Yeadon, CUPE Communications (416) 578-8774