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Paramed workers vote in favour of strike action


Home care workers with ParaMed, represented by OPSEU Local 492, have voted 77 per cent in favour of strike action after negotiators for management said they do not have a mandate to discuss monetary issues.

“With this strong strike mandate our members have spoken forcefully,” said Cathy Boudens, president of Local 492 and chair of the bargaining team. “We can reach agreement if the employer is prepared to negotiate the last items on the table, including wages and benefits.”

Local 492 represents more than 130 home care workers, including nurses and personal support workers in several communities across eastern Ontario, including Pembroke, Barry’s Bay, Eganville and Arnprior. Their current agreement expired on Dec. 31, 2009.

The two sides met in conciliation last week without reaching an agreement. Talks are continuing this week.

ParaMed is division of Extendicare (Canada), and is the largest provider of home care health services in Canada.