The Building Union of Canada (BUC), Carpenters and Allied Workers, Local 27, United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America, and other parties successfully filed interventions to the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) for the purpose of exposing the fact that LIUNA Local 183 was guilty of making its’ members participate in an illegal strike. The OLRB have ordered LIUNA Local 183 to instruct its members to go back to work immediately.
Unfortunately, during the hearing LIUNA Local 183 attempted to convince the OLRB that this illegal strike was not initiated by LIUNA Local 183 but was instigated by its members.
As of 3:00 p.m. December 13th, LIUNA Local 183 has also been ordered by the OLRB to post the decision at the relevant job sites and disseminate the decision electronically as well.
Clonard Group Inc. employees who are represented by the Building Union of Canada have been working on a construction job site located at 178 Victoria St, Toronto, ON for approximately 3 years. On Wednesday, December 6th LIUNA representatives arrived at the site to protest and attempt to have Clonard removed from the site. Clonard employees have a legal right to work on the site and all LIUNA could accomplish was to forcefully remove approximately 70 of their own members, who were told to go home without pay as part of their protest.
The Building Union of Canada showed up at the site and successfully kept their own members at Clonard working. LIUNA’s plan was to protest the job site for the rest of the week but when they became aware that BUC and their friends at the Carpenters Union would be at site on mass, LIUNA cancelled their protests for the rest of the week. Approximately 40 BUC and Carpenter Union Representatives arrived at the site on Thursday, December 7 to support their Members working for Clonard. LIUNA was a no show because they realized their plans had failed. Ironically, the only people that suffered because of this protest were LIUNA’s own members who lost a full day’s wages.
Over the summer, the university agreed to a conclusion decades in the making
Shane Madill • Aug 4, 2017 • The Silhouette
In April 2017, an agreement between The Building Union of Canada on behalf of the Operation and Maintenance Staff of McMaster and the university was reached to update the Pay Equity Plan. Effective Oct. 8, all cleaning staff, regardless of job title, will be paid identical wages. This does not include wage increases due to experience.
This conclusion has been overdue for decades. At a Board of Governors meeting on Oct. 21, 2010, they voted to ratify the tentative agreements between the University and the Service Employees International Union, the ones representing the staff at the time. These negotiations left a lot to be desired.
84 full-time employees were assigned wages at or below the poverty line without dental or health coverage benefits. Part-time employees were left even worse off as they were non-unionized until the mid-2000s, and their recency became a disadvantage. It resulted in a 25 per cent reduction in pay for cleaners according to Peter Foulds, director of operations for BUC.
The BUC took over in August 2013. Using arguments related to the living wage, a heavily researched concept at McMaster, points made in Patrick Deane’s “Forward with Integrity” paper, arbitration and digging into the specifics of old agreements, they eventually got to a point where they could renegotiate.
After lawyers, government officials and a large amount of legal back and forth, the university conceded that they had not had proper pay equity practices in place for an extensive period of time dating to before the 2010 agreement.
This agreement from April includes pay increases between 5.2 per cent and 21 per cent for staff, lump sum payments to compensate for the failure to maintain the pay equity and represents the first monetary increase since that 2010 date.
Foulds believes that McMaster is now treating its employees fairly. The legal progress and agreements are one that the union, the university and the staff are happy with.
The next steps relate to the potential for the Ontario government to push forward additional legislation on the minimum wage in the province. Another, more immediate process currently in progress is a grievance filed related to parking privileges during employees’ night shift. The next meeting for this is expected to take place on Aug. 3.