Oakville reaches deal with inside workers; outside staff poised to strike midnight Wednesday

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Published October 31, 2023 at 2:28 pm

oakville council chambers

 

The Town of Oakville has struck a deal with its inside workers but are headed for a strike with its inside workers and facility operators.

Both are represented by CUPE.

The Town reached a tentative agreement with CUPE 1329, the union representing the town’s 357 inside workers Friday evening. Town Council ratified the tentative agreement Monday night. Details will be available once union members vote on ratifying the agreement later this week.

The Town remains deadlocked in talks with its 257 outside workers and facility operators, represented by CUPE 136. On Monday, following “promising discussions” with CUPE 136 leadership, the Town offered to resume negotiations Wednesday, after the strike deadline had passed to try and reach a “fair and reasonable agreement” with the union that balances the needs of employees with responsibilities to taxpayers.

On Monday, October 30, following “promising discussions” with members of the CUPE 136 leadership, the Town offered to resume negotiations on November 2. The union, however, told the Town’s negotiating team its members would be proceeding with a strike as of midnight Wednesday.

The union, according to the Town had the option to not exercise the first opportunity to strike in order to resume negotiations and delay a strike, with Town of Oakville negotiators saying they would be “willing to return to the table” provided the union “commit to bargain on key issues that led to the impasse.”

“It is regrettable that they are not delaying their strike action,” the Town said in a statement.

Earlier this month, the union rejected the town’s offer, which included overall wage increases worth 12.75 per cent over four years, “significant” enhancement to vacation entitlement as well as increases to shift premiums, meal and tool allowances, plus the introduction of compassionate care leave top up payments.

“We are pleased we have been successful in reaching a tentative agreement that is fair and reasonable with our CUPE 1329 inside workers and want to thank the respective bargaining teams for their efforts to reach this outcome,” said Oakville CAO Jane Clohecy. “We remain hopeful that we can reach an agreement with our CUPE 136 outside workers if they are prepared to come to the table to have meaningful discussions and delay their intention to strike.”

Many of Oakville’s facilities and public services will be affected by the strike, with the Town insisting it has plans in place to limit the disruption as much as possible and ensure that essential service delivery, and health and safety related matters are prioritized.

The following facilities will close:

  • Community centres and arenas
  • Washrooms in parks
  • Leash free dog parks
  • Field house at Bronte Athletic Park

In addition, recreation and culture rentals and programs will be cancelled, and some services offered by parks, and roads and works operations, such as loose leaf collection would be at a reduced capacity.

Town Hall including ServiceOakville, libraries (including those operating out of community centres), Sir John Colborne Recreation Centre for Seniors, Oakville Museum at Erchless Estate and the Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts and most online services will remain open. Oakville Transit will continue to operate.

For updates on the labour disruption and a list of impacted services visit the Labour Relations page.

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