Elizabeth Fry workers face lockout June 22

HAMILTON, ON, June 12, 2012 /CNW/ - Workers at the Elizabeth Fry Society in Hamilton face the prospect of being locked out on June 22 unless both sides in the contract dispute are able to reach an agreement prior to that date.

The 10 employees, members of Local 262 of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union, have been without a contract since March 2010 and the prospects of reaching a deal before the June 22 deadline appear dim, said a spokesperson for the union.

"Despite coming into additional revenue of close to $180,000 through the sale of property and through other outstanding receivables the employer does not appear anxious to reach a settlement," said Deb Tungatt, a member the local bargaining team and an executive board member of OPSEU. "On top of that the Society is in arrears of proxy pay equity payments that it owes our members."

Members of Local 262 rejected the employer's tentative contract offer in a June 4 vote. Efforts at working through a conciliator have failed and the two sides are scheduled to meet with a mediator on June 19.

"We hope management reconsiders its position to lock us out. We want to be at work. We want to continue to deliver the services that are so vitally needed in our community," added Tungatt.

OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas said it is "inexcusable" that staff have gone without a contract for more than 26 months and added: "A settlement can be reached but the employer will need to improve on its offer that our members have already rejected."

The Elizabeth Fry Society provides services and support for women who are in, or have recently been in conflict with the law.

SOURCE Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU)

For further information:

Deb Tungatt
Local 262 Bargaining Team
289-260-6156 (mobile)


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