LifeLabs workers on strike for a fair contract that puts patient care and workers before profits

Barrie, ON – After over a year of bargaining, LifeLabs workers from Orillia, Barrie, Collingwood, and Wasaga Beach are on strike for a contract that empowers them to provide high quality patient care.

LifeLabs, and its CEO Charlie Brown, are putting profits over patient care. He would rather disrupt access to laboratory services and create barriers for patients by forcing them to travel further, then reach a fair deal.

Both parties worked until late in the evening on Wednesday, May 1st but were unable to reach a tentative agreement that addressed outstanding issues like sick leave. After a global pandemic we know paid sick leave is an important right for all workers. LifeLabs management wants to divide full-time and part-time workers and force part-time workers to accept less than they deserve.

This majority female workforce has been sounding the alarm about chronic understaffing that prevents them from conducting regular and mandatory health and safety inspections. Additionally, members asked management for security services because of incidents of assaults against staff from patients. Lifelabs management hasn’t responded to these crucial concerns from members but has managed to address them for the scabs they hired. Its clear management can create healthy, safe and fair working conditions but is picking and choosing when to do so. In a medical laboratory, health and safety should be the foremost priority.

“After dragging their feet for over a year, the employer has failed to offer members a fair deal. Instead, they’ve been forced out on the street,” said OPSEU/SEFPO President JP Hornick. “We’re ready to hold the line until our needs are met. The employer may have deep pockets, but that’s no match for the collective power of organized workers! United, we will not be defeated.”

“The employer is making a clear choice to prioritize profits over workers and patient care,” said OPSEU/SEFPO Local 389 President, Renee Aiken Kearsley. “Charles Brown can prevent further disruption of laboratory services by returning to the bargaining table to negotiate a fair deal.”

The members of OPSEU/SEFPO Local 389 include Laboratory Technicians and Medical Laboratory Assistants who perform critical medical testing to ensure timely diagnosis. They stand firm in their demands for a fair contract so they can provide the highest quality of patient care.

Picket lines will be running throughout Simcoe County LifeLabs locations daily.


When: Monday to Friday, 6 AM to 3 PM

Saturday 8 AM to 12 PM

Where: 121 Wellington St W #106

When: Monday to Friday, 7 AM to 4:30 PM

Where: 480 Huronia Rd #201


When: Monday to Friday, 7 AM to 4:30 PM

Where: 210 Memorial Ave #107

Wasaga Beach:

When: Monday to Friday, 7 AM to 4:30 PM

Where: 14 Ramblewood Dr #104