The City of Toronto’s 23,000 inside workers will vote, Wednesday, on the city’s final offer.
Voting began at 7 a.m. and will end at 8 p.m. Results of the vote will be released Wednesday night or early Thursday morning.
CUPE Local 79 president Tim Macguire said workers realize if they vote to reject this contract, there’s a good chance it could lead to a strike.
‘Because we have a strike mandate, based on the possibility that the city may impose terms, then there’s a very real possibility of a strike if the city does that,” Maguire said.
If the contract offer is rejected, the city could opt to lock out workers or impose that forced settlement.
City officials have called their final offer to inside workers fair for both employees and taxpayers.
Although the union won’t tell its members which way to vote, the city said it is confident the CUPE Local 79 members will vote in favour of the contract.
Despite the fact that inside workers, which include daycare workers, recreation-centre staff and ambulance dispatchers, voted overwhelmingly in favour of job action, the city said it doesn’t think they want to walk off the job.
Deputy Mayor Doug Holyday said in these touch economic times, the city’s final offer has been more than fair.
“It’s a good deal for the employees, as was 416. Council has ratified the matter without a dissenting vote, it leaves them with one of the best contracts in all of Canada,” said Holyday.
The city’s HR boss Bruce Anderson said the city will be ready if the workers reject the deal.
“We could lock them out or we could impose terms and conditions, we could impose these terms and conditions, we could implement other terms and conditions,” Anderson said.
The offer is said to be similar to the one accepted by Toronto’s outside workers last month.
“The offer that Local 79 members will be voting on is fair, reasonable and affordable. It is very similar to the Local 416 agreement ratified last month and we are confident that Local 79 members will ratify the deal,” Holyday said.
In the event the offer isn’t accepted, Tim Maguire said Local 79 will wait for the city to respond before taking any possible job action.
Highlights of the offer include a four-year term with job security and wages and benefits that are almost identical to the 416 agreement that was ratified unanimously by city council in February. Read more about the offer here.
Full details of the offer will be only released once the agreements are ratified by the Local 79 membership and approved by city council.
The ratification vote will be held at three separate locations across the city. Below are the locations (open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.):
- Northwest – Montecassino Hotel and Event Venue (Salon C)
3710 Chesswood Dr.
Public transit: shuttle bus will run all day from Downsview Subway (or it’s a 15-minute walk)
- Downtown – Sheraton Hotel (Civic Ballroom, second floor)
- Northeast – Delta (Heritage Room)
2035 Kennedy Road (at Hwy. 401)
Public transit: shuttle bus will run all day from the Scarborough Midland RT station