The CEO and Board of New Path Youth and Family Services are putting children's mental health services across Simcoe County in jeopardy by refusing to bargain seriously with their frontline employees.
That's the message children's mental health workers at New Path shared with the public during an information picket in Barrie July 5.
OPSEU members from Local 332 handed out flyers and warned that they may be on strike a little over a week from now, on July 14, unless management gets serious about bargaining. Management and the union meet next on July 10.
Passersby were shocked to hear that the management of New Path has offered their employees Visa gift cards instead of a wage increase, especially when they learned that New Path CEO Glen Newby has enjoyed a wage increase of more than 15 per cent over the past two years. Picketers received lots of support from the people they talked with, as well as the honking horns of passing cars.
For years, children's mental health workers at New Path have faced austerity bargaining, with wages that have fallen well behind the cost of living and gift cards replacing fair compensation. This time around, the bargaining team is demanding a modest but fair wage increase and an end to gift card bargaining.
Children's mental health funding needs to reach the front lines
New Path Youth and Familiy Services is the lead agency for Simcoe County on the provincial government's Moving on Mental Health plan. The agency is responsible for ensuring that children's mental health services are available across their service area.
It is irresponsible to put those services in jeopardy by refusing to properly compensate the people who provide services to children and families. It is the work of these frontline employees that has made New Path a leader in the community.
It is time for the management of New Path to act like leaders and pay their staff fairly.
Support the employees of New Path
OPSEU 332 members need your help! Please help avoid a labour disruption on July 14 by telling the following people to ensure that the public funding for New Path reaches the people on the front line:
Premier Kathleen Wynne
416-325-1941 – firstname.lastname@example.org
Children and Youth Services Minister Michael Coteau
416-212-7432 – email@example.com
New Path CEO Glen Newby
1-866-566-7656 – firstname.lastname@example.org
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