Toronto continues to seek negotiated settlement with CUPE union locals

    TORONTO, June 3 /CNW/ - The City of Toronto today confirmed that
negotiated settlements remain the objective of separate bargaining that
continues with the Toronto Civic Employees' Union Local 416 (CUPE) and also
the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 79.
    The City wants to reach a negotiated settlement at each of the bargaining
tables as this is the best way to maintain a positive workplace and provide
the best service delivery for residents and businesses. The City continues to
believe that the collective agreements being negotiated must be fair to
employees, affordable to the City and contain the flexibility required to
continue to provide the vast number of services the City delivers within
Toronto's many diverse communities.
    Given the City's financial circumstances, operating budget pressures and
the ongoing economic recession, it is important that collective agreements
reflect the financial ability of the City and be affordable to Torontonians.
    Both CUPE Locals have requested that the provincial conciliation officers
that have been working with the City and the unions since the beginning of
April inform the Minister of Labour that a collective agreement cannot be
reached at this time. The Minister of Labour may then issue what is referred
to as a "no-board" report, after which the unions would be in a legal strike
position on the 17th day after the report is issued.
    The City of Toronto will continue to seek negotiated settlements with its
unions. If a labour disruption occurs, the City of Toronto will implement a
contingency plan to ensure that critical services continue. The plan will be
broadly communicated immediately before any labour disruption. The TTC, Police
and Fire Services and the City's Long Term Care Homes & Services (Homes for
the Aged) and Toronto Community Housing properties would not be affected. In
addition, the City and unions have agreements for maintaining essential
Emergency Medical Services (Ambulance).
    Collective agreements for employees who work in some of the City's
agencies, boards and commissions (such as the Toronto Transit Commission,
Toronto Public Library, the Toronto Police Service and Toronto Community
Housing Corporation) are negotiated with other unions or are negotiated
separately and are therefore not part of these negotiations.
    The Toronto Public Service delivers many important services - many 24
hours a day, seven days a week. The collective agreements to be negotiated
outline the terms and conditions of employment for the staff who deliver these
key services to the public.

    Local 416:

    The Toronto Civic Employees' Union Local 416 (CUPE) represents about
6,200 outside workers. Bargaining commenced with the exchange of proposals at
the first meeting on January 16, 2009, and the parties have had 45 meetings
(full or part days of meetings across the table) since that time. There is one
collective agreement to be concluded with Local 416.

    Local 79:

    CUPE Local 79 represents over 11,600 full-time inside and 12,750
part-time inside, Long Term Care Homes and Services (Homes for the Aged) and
recreation workers. Bargaining commenced with the exchange of proposals at the
first meeting on February 9, 2009, and the parties have had more than 55
meetings (full or part days of meetings across the table) since then. There
are four collective agreements to be concluded with Local 79.

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For further information:

For further information: Media contact: Kevin Sack, Director, Strategic
Communications, City of Toronto, (416) 397-5277 (office), (416) 919-6500

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