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Thomas: Ford ‘spoiling for a war with labour’

OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas

OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas tells The Globe and Mail that the Ford government’s public musings about capping wage increases is a declaration of war.

“I think he’s [the Premier] spoiling for a war with labour,” says Thomas in The Globe. “We’re not looking to go to war, but I kind of think we are already in one.”

Treasury Board President Peter Bethlenfalvy floated the idea of wage caps during a speech on March 4. The Globe reports that Bethlenfalvy “told a business luncheon the province is launching a six-week consultation exercise for scores of unions and employers in the public sector – universities, colleges, hospitals and other agencies, as well as government workers – to find ways to keep wage settlements modest.”

The Globe reports that Thomas, who has been demanding meetings with the Ford government for months, “said his union would participate, adding that OPSEU has its own ideas for savings, including reducing what he called an oversupply of management staff at many government agencies.”