R&F Labour News Update – August 10, 2015

Late-hour Brock deal | Polish workers to strike in Britain | Londoners stir up dirt on Canada Post | More paramedic support | Postal workers caravan | Kamloops recycling workers strike | UWindsor axes food service jobs | Nunavut Employees Union counter-offer | Westjet union drive | NS museum workers | Working while Black in NS | Restaurant workers owed $675,000

Late-hour deal avoids strike at Brock
St. Catherines Standard
August 9, 2015

A tentative deal reached just hours before deadline appears to have averted a strike at Brock University.

The school and the Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation district 35 announced Sunday night they have reached a tentative contract agreement.

The OSSTF represents about 200 administrative support staff at Brock who were expected to take job action Monday orning if no deal was reached.

Thousands of Polish workers set to take part in first ever migrant strike
Carri-Ann Taylor
August 8, 2015

Thousands of Polish workers are set to go on strike because they are fed up of being blamed for Britain’s economic problems.

The protests are believed to have been sparked by by discussions on internet forums and is being backed by Polish language newspaper, Polish Express.

The strike, set for August 20, is not backed by any trade union.

Londoners stir up some dirt on Canada Post
David Heap and Wendy Goldsmith
August 7, 2015
Inspired by other community activists Ottawa and Hamilton, Londoners have been taking up the spade in response to Canada Post’s hurried approach to the conversion of door to door delivery to self serve mail boxes.

After working on door-to-door canvassing since January, raising the issue in local media, in town hall meetings and in our neighbourhoods, we have had to step up our resistance to the Canada Post juggernaut in recent weeks.

More support needed for paramedics: union
Daniel MacEachern
The Telegraph
August 7, 2015

In the wake of a paramedic’s suicide — his body was recovered from the water off Cape Spear on Thursday — more support is needed for workers, say people in the field.

Chris Harris, president of the Paramedic Association of Newfoundland and Labrador, said the man’s death — The Telegram isn’t publishing his name — speaks to the stresses faced by people in the field from long, stressful hours to call after call involving people in life-threatening situations.
Postal workers caravan cruises through townLNUCaravan
Grace Protopapas
Kenora Online
August 7, 2015You may have noticed a big caravan driving around town yesterday with the slogan ‘Stop the Cuts!’ The Canadian Union of Postal Workers president Mike Palecek is driving across Canada to raise awareness about the Canada Post cuts. Palecek talks about how the tour is going. 
No end in sight to recycling workers’ strike in Kamloops
Tim Petruck
Kamloops This Week
August 7, 2015
As recyclables pile up in garages and storage rooms in homes and businesses across Kamloops, city officials say they are staying put — at least for the time being.The City of Kamloops stopped collecting recyclables on June 22, when Emterra’s 10 unionized Kamloops workers went on strike demanding higher wages.

UWindsor axes food service jobs
Peter Langille
August 7, 2015The University of Windsor is eliminating at least 50 food service jobs on campus and as many as 70.Members of CUPE Local 1001 were coming back to sign up for their positions this fall and were not given any advance notice the positions were being axed.These are part-time workers — most of whom are women and single mothers — who are laid off at the end of the term in April and return in August to sign up for the fall term.LNUWindsor

Energy workers’ union presents counter-offer to Qulliq Energy

Sima Sahar Zerehi
CBC News
August 7, 2015

The Nunavut Employees Union presented Qulliq Energy Corporation management with a counter-offer today, in an effort to end a strike by the territory’s energy workers that has persisted for weeks.

The Qulliq Energy Corp. presented the union with an offer in writing Thursday morning.

Union drive at WestJet highlights current tensions in labour policy
David Doorey
The Globe and Mail
August 7, 2015

The much-hyped unionization bid by WestJet pilots is over, for now. On Wednesday, a small majority of WestJet pilots voted against being represented by an independent union. Fifty-five per cent of the pilots voted to remain non-union, while 45 per cent voted to unionize.

On one hand, the WestJet story is just a footnote in Canadian labour history, another close but unsuccessful attempt at unionization. But if we step back, we can see in the WestJet story some important themes that speak to the most pressing tensions in labour policy debates in Canada today.

N.S. museum workers vote to strike following 3 years at bargaining table: Union says employer dragging out negotiations over pension issue
Canadian Labour Reporter
August 5, 2015

SHERBROOKE, N.S. (CP) — Dozens of unionized employees at a Nova Scotia museum have voted to strike following negotiations that have lasted more than three years.

The union says its workers at Sherbrooke Village museum voted 85 per cent in favour of striking at a meeting Tuesday night.

Story telling against racism: Working while black in Nova Scotia
Melissa Keith
Our Times
Vol. 34 Issue 2, Summer 2015

It’s a Monday evening at Kwacha House Café in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The clientele may be gone for the day, but the conversation is just beginning. Three members of the Working While Black in Nova Scotia project have gotten together to explain what the project is and why it’s needed.

Restaurant workers owed $675,000 in wages — but will they get their money?LNUrestauran
Sara Mojtehedzadeh
Toronto Star
August 4, 2015

In one of the largest cases of its kind, the Ministry of Labour has ordered the owners of a number of Toronto-area businesses, including four now-closed Chinese restaurants, to pay employees more than $675,000 in wages owed to them.

A group of 68 immigrant workers at Regal restaurants chain were denied their pay in a variety of ways, according to evidence provided by the workers and accepted by the ministry.

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