Deal means less precarious work, better schedules, and more secure jobs
Thanks to the support and hard work of OPSEU members across Ontario, your bargaining team was able to reach a last-minute deal to avert a strike at the LCBO.
This is a deal that LBED members, with the support of members from across OPSEU, built together. Your work to build public support for a better LCBO, and your demonstration of your willingness to do whatever was needed to build that better LCBO, showed the employer there was a real possibility of a work stoppage and created the context for a deal that will have lasting benefits for LCBO workers for years to come.
You should be proud of the work you did. Over the months the bargaining team was at the table, you:
- Held more than 120 information pickets, public BBQs, or ice-cream giveaways to share our message with the public
- Gave out more than 100,000 leaflets and flyers, explaining the problems with working conditions at the LCBO, and our plan for making it better
- Took the conversation online through social media, member testimonials, and online videos
- Showed your solidarity with the team and your fellow members through buttons, stickers, and rallies
- Talked to friends, family, neighbours, strangers, and the media about the better LCBO we knew was possible
All that work had an impact at the table. There are wins in this deal that the employer wouldn't even consider earlier, but which came forward as a result of your efforts. Meanwhile, we were able to stop many of the employer's attacks on the collective agreement, including their attempts to remove the language preventing the contracting out of your work.
At the same time, bargaining is always a give and take process, and no deal ever gives us everything we want, all at once. In the end, the team made the call that this was the best deal available, and is unanimously recommending acceptance of a tentative settlement that will lock down the gains that have been made, hold the LCBO accountable, and allow workers to prepare for the next round from a stronger position.
And those gains are significant. By voting "YES" to this deal:
- The expansion of private alcohol sales in grocery stores will not lead to any store closures, or any PFT layoffs.
- A hard cap will be put on the number of casual retail workers, and that number will be brought down to 70 per cent of retail workers over the next four years, with a guarantee of hundreds of new PFT jobs.
- The LCBO will now be forced to fill all PFT vacancies that occur.
- Workers will receive a 7.5 per cent wage increase, with special adjustments for product consultants and for fixed-term workers, who will be brought up to the same pay as the first step of the casual grid.
- The LCBO will no longer be allowed to use agency workers in logistics, and will bring 100,000 tasting hours back in-house in retail, meaning more work for our members.
- Casuals will move to a six-day-a-week scheduling, ending the 50- or 60-day stretches of work they had been stuck with, and will get their schedules three weeks in advance, like PFTs.
- No worker will have to work a two-hour shift ever again, with a new minimum of three hours.
- Scheduling changes will make it easier for casuals to turn five-hour shifts into full days when there is unforeseen work.
- Casuals will face fewer barriers to getting access to benefits, as all hours on authorized leaves will be included when calculating hours for the Casual Benefit Plan.
- PFT retail workers will get more weekends off, with an increase in the number of Saturdays they have off from 15 to 17, and a decrease in the number of Sundays they can be forced to work from 13 to 10.
There are many more wins, including better harassment and mental health language, and a commitment to improve the grievance process, that can be found in the previous bargaining bulletin. So when you go to cast your vote on July 18-19, remember all the work that you and your fellow members put into building public support, and vote "YES" to the deal that we built together.
Chair, LBED bargaining team
Ratification vote locations available online
OPSEU members at the LCBO will have an opportunity to vote on the tentative agreement on July 18 and 19. Make sure you know where to vote by checking the list of ratification vote locations online. You can also find a set of answers to commonly-asked questions about the tentative settlement on our website.
Meet your mobilizers!
Meet your bargaining team
The OPSEU bargaining team for the Liquor Board Employees Division consists of five members:
Denise Davis, Chair, Local 378
Colleen MacLeod, Vice-Chair, Local 5107
Jennifer Van Zetten, Local 162
Robin Reath, Local 163
Mark Larocque, Local 499
The bargaining team is assisted by OPSEU Negotiator Jeff Weston, Researcher Steve Crossman, and other assigned staff.
Contact us by email at LBEDbargaining@opseu.org
You can receive this bargaining bulletin (and our regular newsletter, the Echo) directly by e-mail. Just call OPSEU at 1-800-268-7376 or (416) 443-8888, and give the operator your name and e-mail address.
You can also watch for updates on the OPSEU website at www.opseu.org/LBEDbargaining. And be sure to attend upcoming bargaining information meetings in your area.