Newsletter

Rideauwood Addiction and Family Services Bargaining Update

Publication Date

Monday, January 22, 2018 - 3:45pm

Our employer promises to treat the people and communities we serve with “compassion and respect.” But that’s impossible when they refuse to treat their own workers the same way. We’re on the front-lines of the opioid crisis – don’t we deserve compassion and respect, too?

For the past year-and-a-half, your bargaining team has been hard at work trying to negotiate a fair first contract in good faith. All we want is a collective agreement that gives us what we need to offer the best possible care and treatment: security, stability, and fairness. 

The last thing we want is to have to stop offering the care and treatment that our clients depend on. But that’s exactly what Executive Director Marion Wright is risking. 

On Wednesday, Jan. 17, your bargaining team sat down for conciliation with Wright and her legal counsel. Despite the support of a professional conciliator, Wright and her counsel refused to compromise on the key issues of:

  • Seniority in layoffs
  • Our right to be represented in disputes over insured benefits
  • Fair wages

Your bargaining team is convinced that we can reach a fair agreement at the table, and remains firmly committed to achieving that before a strike or lockout. But based on the employer’s lack of movement during conciliation, we have been forced to file a No Board report with the Ministry of Labour.

This triggered the countdown towards either a strike or a lockout as early as Friday, February 9, although a process called "first-contract mediation-arbitration” could defer a strike or lockout by at least 45 days. This process, which is only available to locals like ours which are trying to achieve a first collective agreement, would see negotiations continue with the assistance of the Ministry of Labour. But throughout this process, we would continue preparing for a strike or lock-out.

Thousands of people depend on the treatment and care we provide, but we can’t provide it without decent working conditions. 

That’s what our strike vote of 84% says so strongly: we are committed to doing what we need to do to protect the services we provide.

Our communities and the people we serve support us. By standing together and telling our story to the public, we’ll achieve the working conditions we and our clients deserve.

Support your bargaining team

You can support your bargaining committee by continuing to show signs of solidarity by wearing OPSEU buttons, wearing blue, and openly discussing the issues with co-workers and members of the public.

Drop-in Information Session Monday, Jan. 29, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

To achieve our goal of a fair collective agreement, we need your help!

To find out more, please drop in to our info session on Monday, January 29 between 11:30 a.m., and 1:30 p.m.  at West Park Lanes, 1205 Wellington St. 

We’ll discuss our strategies to show Marion Wright and the Board of Directors that we are united and will not back down.

Your bargaining team:

Wendy Brown: [email protected]

Vanessa Robinson: [email protected], 613 513 8403

Joseph Zacconi: [email protected] 

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