Unions react to recent armoured car robbery

Unifor calls for action while Teamsters Canada urges patience
|labour-reporter.com|Last Updated: 01/28/2014

Unifor is calling for a meeting with Canada’s public safety minister Steven Blaney in the wake of a recent armoured car robbery in Toronto.

An armoured car crew was robbed at gunpoint on Jan. 20, just outside Toronto’s Fairview Mall. A bullet hole was reportedly found in one of the armoured car’s windows in addition to shell casings and bags of cash scattered on the ground outside the vehicle.

“In light of the recent robbery of a two-person crew… you will appreciate my urgency in setting up this meeting with you,” Unifor national president Jerry Dias wrote in a letter to Blaney.

Dias is calling for a task force on the armoured car industry to carry out comprehensive policy research and develop recommendations and legislative guidance. He is also calling on the minister to meet with the union as Unifor represent 2,000 workers in the armoured car industry.

Another union representing armoured car employees, however, is urging patience.

“The safety of this industry’s workers is an issue we’ve been working on it for a while now,” said Teamsters Canada Armoured Car director Jim Chalmers in a statement. “But I think it’s better to wait for the results of the police investigation before drawing hasty conclusions.”

Chalmers said the Teamsters Union has been working with Blaney and his staff for some time in an effort to identify and resolve safety issues in the armoured car industry.

“We’re going to continue our close collaboration to improve the safety of our members and, of course, the general public,” he said. “In the meantime, we’re going to provide support to our two members who were involved in the exchange of gunfire.”

Teamsters Union represents close to 2,000 workers in the armoured car industry.

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