Simcoe County workers in Barrie, Ont., deliver strike vote

Talks break down over pay, wage parity: OPSEU
|labour-reporter.com|Last Updated: 01/12/2018
Labour strike
The OPSEU members in the social housing department have a wide variety of responsibilities, from information collecting, referrals, tenders and administrative support, to general maintenance and repairs, including electrical, plumbing and grounds maintenance, said the union. GOOGLE STREET VIEW

Members of Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU), Local 328 — which represents 22 superintendents and housing clerks in the Social Housing Department of Simcoe County in Ontario — handed their bargaining team a strike mandate on Jan. 5.

The workers have been without a contract since Dec. 31. Since then, negotiations have stalled on the question of remuneration and internal wage parity, according to bargaining team chair Mary Ellen Kelloway.

"While we agreed on a number of matters, such as benefits, we couldn't reach an agreement on wage hikes,” said Kelloway. “The employer is offering increases that are below the rate of inflation – we'd be taking a wage cut.”

The County of Simcoe owns more than 1,300 housing units for seniors, families and individuals. The OPSEU members in the social housing department have a wide variety of responsibilities, from information collecting, referrals, tenders and administrative support, to general maintenance and repairs, including electrical, plumbing and grounds maintenance, said the union.

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