Only one issue remains outstanding to get 1,400 striking workers back on
TORONTO, May 31, 2013 /CNW/ - Ontario's Labour Relations Act designates
the National Elevator Escalator Association (NEEA) as an employer
bargaining agency. In this role, NEEA collectively bargains with the
International Union of Elevator Constructors (IUEC) for all employers
performing Industrial-Commercial-Institutional (ICI) construction in
Despite NEEA's best efforts to achieve a negotiated collective agreement
with IUEC, negotiations for the renewal agreement broke off in the
early morning of May 1st and the union opted to go on strike.
NEEA would like to get the 1,400 IUEC workers across the province back
to work and in an effort to do so, NEEA and IUEC met with the
assistance of a mediator on May 23 and 24, 2013. While the vast
majority of issues have been resolved, including a significant increase
to hourly wages, up from the current elevator mechanic wage of
$112,000/year to $121,000/year, we have been unable to achieve
agreement on one remaining employer issue which is a reasonable
modification to seniority.
In order to improve safety, training and improved product knowledge,
NEEA is proposing that the industry move from industry seniority to
individual company seniority. Currently the elevator and escalator
industry is the only construction trade in Ontario that allows workers
to carry seniority between different employers. This practice was arbitrated into the collective agreements in Ontario,
Alberta, Nova Scotia and BC in the mid-1970's. Since then, in the
provinces other than Ontario, NEEA and the union have agreed to either
eliminate, grandfather or move seniority to separate collective
We are disappointed that the union has chosen to strike and withdraw
Although the only discussions we have had with the union since they went
on strike occurred when the mediator called the parties together on May
23 and 24, NEEA continues to be available to participate in meaningful
negotiations that could lead to a prompt settlement.
In the meantime, the first priority of our members, KONE, Otis,
Schindler and ThyssenKrupp Elevator, continues to be the safety of the
people of Ontario who rely on elevators and escalators daily. Each of
our members has implemented a contingency plan employing trained,
qualified personnel to support our customers and minimize the impact of
the strike on Ontarians. Our members are committed to providing
elevators and escalators that remain safe and operational for our
customers and the public.
Today more than 95% of all of the elevators and escalators in Ontario
maintained by KONE, Otis, Schindler and ThyssenKrupp Elevator continue
to be fully operational.
NEEA remains hopeful that a collective agreement can be reached and will
continue to work towards that end.
SOURCE: National Elevator Escalator Association (NEEA)
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