Councillor Josh Matlow

Newstalk 1010: War of Words Over Labour Stalemate

January 15, 2012


It doesn’t appear that CUPE Local 416’s offer of a three year wage freeze has done anything to change the labour stalemate at Toronto city hall.

The union representing Toronto’s outside workers has been without a contract since the beginning of the year and offered up the wage freeze Friday.

But Sunday on Newstalk 1010’s The City, CUPE Local 416 President Mark Ferguson told host Josh Matlow the offer hasn’t lead to any developments in contract talks.

“Really at this point there’s nothing to take back to our members until (the city) agrees to this good win-win-win proposal.”

Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti criticized the wage freeze offer saying Ferguson was bargaining in public and in bad faith.

Ferguson responded: “Well if you have a problem with bad faith bargaining I suggest you take us to the Ontario Labour Relations Board. That’s certainly the option that I’m considering at this point to get the city to the table so that we can resolve this unfortunate situation.”

Ferguson also suggested that the city refused to sign an agreement that both sides would not speak to the media.

When asked by host Josh Matlow if it appears the city is headed towards a labour disruption, Ferguson said it seems likely.

“With the likes of Giorgio Mammoliti it’s not surprising we’re not able to get a deal. I would encourage all residents in Ward 7 not to vote for this councillor in the next election.”

“There you go,” responded Mammoliti. That’s the real issue that Mr. Ferguson wants to get at. It’s that power that they want to have as union members.”

“Instead of talking issues,” continued Mammoliti, “you’re talking about going after people’s heads Mark. That’s wrong. You should actually resign and represent your members properly.

“You don’t deserve to hold office,” said Ferguson.

“Why don’t you run for office if you want to do something politically active,” said Mammoliti.

“I’ll run against you,” said Ferguson.

“Do it,” responded Mammoliti.

The city has requested a no-board report from the province. It could be issued sometime this week. If the province issues a no-board report it would allow a strike or lockout within 17 days.


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