December 1, 2020
WINDSOR– Health care workers at Brouillette Manor held a rally outside the facility demanding a fair and equitable collective agreement after contract negotiations came to a standstill.
“This employer is treating these essential long term care workers with such disrespect at a time when we all know they are COVID heroes,”,” said Tullio DiPonti, President of Unifor Local 2458. “To be seeking unfair concessions shows they are not serious about wanting to negotiate a collective agreement.”
Contract negotiations opened with Brouillette Manor on October 27, 2020. The union proposed modest changes to the collective agreement that were immediately rejected by the employer’s legal representatives. The employer’s representatives further stated that it would only be willing to settle a contract that met the Arbitrated awards from 2019.
On the day that the Ontario Legislature was debating the “Time to Care Act”, the employer presented the union with more than six pages of concessions that include concessions in wages, health care benefits, time off, forcing of more hours of work.
“These front line workers have risked their lives to care for residents, and they have been working tirelessly long before this pandemic,” said Katha Fortier, Assistant to Unifor National President. “They deserve to be treated with respect and dignity, not demeaned, disheartened and disrespected by an employer who chooses to call them heroes in the public but treat them as zeroes at the bargaining table.”
“I saw nothing but hurt and pain on the faces of these COVID heroes when the bargaining agent diminished their worth and referred to them as, ‘administrative burdens’, which was genuinely disheartening said,” Chris Taylor, Unifor National Staff Representative. “Long term care workers look after the most vulnerable in our society, and they do it with compassion, pride and selflessness, and when they come in front of Brouillette Manor to bargain a fair agreement they are made to feel worthless.”
The union is steadfast in its resolve to bargain an agreement that fits the needs of the members working at Brouillette Manor and delivers them the respect and dignity that they deserve.
Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad, and strives to create progressive change for a better future.