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Striking Ontario Works employees ratify agreement with County of Renfrew

PEMBROKE, Ont. – After 76 days on the picket line, Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 4989, representing Ontario Works staff in the County of Renfrew, have reached a tentative agreement with the employer.

Earlier today, members voted in favour of the deal that sees some improvements over the last offer rejected by CUPE 4989 members two weeks ago.

“It’s been a long couple of months, says CUPE 4989 President Ghyslaine Turgeon. What really matters is that we are able to get back to work and restore delivery of the services that County of Renfrew residents rely on.”

But before they can get back to work, County Council also needs to ratify the agreement.

“We’ve held our end of the deal and CUPE 4989 members are ready to get back to work providing these crucial services to County of Renfrew residents, says Amy Parker, CUPE National Representative. We have been given a date of August 8 for County to hold a special meeting to move things forward – that’s more than two weeks from now. After 76 days, the County of Renfrew needs to make these services a priority and make an effort to get these 22 members back to work now.”

CUPE 4989 members held a Solidarity Rally and Picnic in the Park earlier today and thanked supporters and residents for their patience and support during the strike. About 200 supporters showed up for the event from all over the province to stand strong with these 22 members.

CUPE National President Paul Moist commended the strength of CUPE 4989 members saying “Our members stood up against an employer with significant demands and ratified an agreement that isn’t what they deserve. Your show of support today demonstrated respect and decency for CUPE 4989 members and let me say that from all social service members in Ontario, we are proud of you for standing up for the services you deliver to individuals and families in crisis.”

Details of the agreement will be available once both parties have ratified the new collective agreement.

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For information:

Marjorie Savoie, CUPE Communications: (613) 864-9924


Click Here to see the photos of the 4989 rally on July 24