Front-line paramedics, who are members of Toronto Civic Employees Union (TCEU) CUPE Local 416, are entering interest arbitration with the City of Toronto to settle outstanding terms of the collective agreement, which expired on December 31, 2019.

Comparatively, other first responders including Toronto Police and Toronto Fire, reached separate five-year agreements with the City of Toronto without the need for costly third party interest arbitration.

“This impasse in negotiations, forcing the need for interest arbitration is deeply disappointing for our paramedics, particularly now when our city is feeling the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown measures. CUPE Local 416 paramedics continue to work tirelessly on the front line protecting the health and safety of all Toronto residents, particularly those who are the most vulnerable,” said Eddie Mariconda, President of CUPE Local 416. 

Mariconda notes that paramedics deserve a fair collective agreement that recognizes their heroic sacrifices during the pandemic and their outstanding contributions to the wellbeing of the citizens of Toronto year-round.

“Having the City of Toronto walk away from the negotiating table right now, during a global health pandemic, is extremely insulting to the selfless work of our paramedics,” says Mariconda.

As the largest paramedic service in Canada, Toronto Paramedic Services is composed of trained health care professionals who are highly skilled in all aspects of pre-hospital emergency medicine and care.