Toronto – OPSEU/SEFPO Local 546 safety inspectors, working for the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA), have ratified their first Collective Agreement, ending their 11-week strike for safety.
The 170 safety inspectors protect public safety by inspecting everything in Ontario from boilers and pressure vessels in schools and hospitals, to elevators in all residential and commercial buildings, to propane dispensing facilities and gas stations, and so much more.
“We joined OPSEU/SEFPO to address longstanding workplace issues and gain a stronger voice for public safety at the TSSA,” said OPSEU/SEFPO Local 546 Bargaining Team member Cory Knipe. “Ratifying our first Collective Agreement – one that we can build on for years to come – is a very special moment for us. It means we can get back to the work we love, keeping Ontario safe.”
The safety inspectors, who work across Ontario, unionised in early 2021. Their strike action began on July 21 after eight months of failed first contract bargaining talks, and officially ended on October 8, following a successful ratification vote by the members of OPSEU/SEFPO Local 546.
By voting to accept their new Collective Agreement, these members will now have access to grievance processes they can rely on, giving them more support and a stronger voice in their workplace. More competitive wages will help to improve recruitment and retention.
“The TSSA safety inspectors’ resilience speaks volumes to the importance of their fight for meaningful change,” said OPSEU/SEFPO President JP Hornick. “They stood together throughout the strike, supported one another, harnessed the power of the entire labour movement, and came out even stronger for it. This Collective Agreement is a win for safety inspectors and for public safety in Ontario.”
During the 11-week strike, safety inspectors received widespread support from fellow OPSEU/SEFPO members and leaders, labour and community allies, MPPs and members of the public – those who joined on the picket lines and held solidarity rallies, sent messages of support and signed petitions.
“When safety inspectors return to work, they’ll be going out there knowing that we’re all standing with them, every day – that’s the power of solidarity,” said OPSEU/SEFPO First Vice-President/Treasurer Laurie Nancekivell. “Thank you to everyone who showed support and took action in solidarity, and congratulations to OPSEU/SEFPO Local 546 TSSA safety inspectors!”
For more information: Kelsea Mahabir, OPSEU/SEFPO Communications Officer, 647-528-2740, email@example.com