Job Security Still a High Union Priority

Wages reflect economic uncertainty in East, skills retention in West
By Gordon Sova
|Canadian Labour Reporter|Last Updated: 01/19/2011

Office and clerical employees of Carleton University have improved job security by providing that there will be no job losses if the university contracts out recruitment of foreign students to a third-party provider. In addition, the 750 members of CUPE will get 1.5 per cent in each of the first two years and 2.0 per cent in each of the final two of a four-year agreement.

The 500 inside and outside employees of the City of Abbotsford, B.C., also CUPE members, will have wage increases of 3.0 per cent in each of two years in semiannual installments. There were no other large changes to premiums and benefits in the agreement.

Two collective agreements had significant adjustments in the first year of the agreement, but also very different ones. Swissplas in Vaughan, Ontario revamped its wage schedule with the creation of a new junior level of General Labour and the elimination of the Maintenance category. The Shipper-Receiver class had its wage rolled back by about 6 per cent and Q.C. Inspector by about 5 per cent. Employees were also forced to contribute to the premiums for the company’s benefit plan.