Labour unrest may end tomorrow and workers return July 31
CUPE local 79 has voted for contract, local 416 to decide today
By Kris Scheuer
Garbage workers may be back on the job as soon as tomorrow.
Around midnight Thursday, CUPE local 416 president Mark Ferguson released a statement that the final details on a tentative deal had been hammered out.
As well, sticking points on back to work protocol including allowing striking garbage collectors to help with the massive clean-up have been ironed out.
This union will hold a vote for members today between 10-6 to ratify the city’s three-contract offer.
“The last two days have been grueling and necessary to ensure our members return to work with collective agreement protection,” said Ferguson in a July 30 statement released after midnight. On Monday morning, Ferguson announced that a tentative deal had been reached. Yet he held out until just before midnight on Wednesday before he recommended sending the contract to his members for a vote.
The good news is, if the majority votes for the deal on Thursday, the union has agreed the workers will return to their jobs on Friday morning prior to ratification by Toronto City Council.
“We had to know that our members would continue to be protected under their old agreement until the new one is fully ratified by both parties,” Ferguson stated.
Local 79, which represents city employees including daycare workers and nurses in homes for the aged, held a contract vote July 29. By 9 p.m. the results showed members overwhelming voted for the contract. But plans of when local 79 union workers would return to the jobs were not released after the vote. In fact a July 29 statement on CUPE local 79‘s website indicates, “Back to work protocols are still being worked on. Please report to your picket site until further notice.”
Mayor David Miller announced July 29 that a special council session will be held at 9:30 am July 31 to ratify the contract for local 79.
If local 416 employees approve their contract today, that deal will also be on the table for council at what is expected to be a heated meeting. Not all councillors plan to vote for the contract the city has offered the unions. See that story, here.
I will update the story along with my colleagues at the Town Crier, when I am back at my job in just a few hours from now.