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TORONTO, Ont. – Workers at SPRINT Senior Care signalled their long-term commitment to caring for Toronto’s seniors by turning down a contract offer that does not include a pension plan.
After months of negotiations, front line workers with SPRINT Senior Care voted by a 94% majority to decline the agency’s offer in favour of a return to the bargaining table.
They hope to reach an agreement that gives them a degree of retirement security so that they can continue to offer continuity of care and service to seniors who wish to live independently in their own homes and communities.
SPRINT Senior Care does provide pension benefits for its managers and directors, but none at all for front line workers, who include personal support workers, drivers and social workers.
Workers fear that, without a workplace pension, they face living in poverty in their own retirement years or, alternatively, having to work long past 65.
Many SPRINT workers are also in low-wage jobs and find it impossible to save for their futures through retirement vehicles like RRSPs.
“By turning down this contract, workers are looking out for the well-being of SPRINT’s clients, as well as for their own futures,” said Kelly O’Sullivan, president of Local 4308 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), which represents workers at SPRINT Senior Care.
“So many of our members want to end their working lives caring for the seniors they have come to know and love. But, without a workplace pension, their dedication is putting their own senior years at risk.
“The management of SPRINT Senior Care – who have all safeguarded their own retirements – can protect continuity of care for clients and ensure their employees’ senior years by putting a workplace pension plan into the collective agreement.”
O’Sullivan said that CUPE members have no plans for job action at this time, but that they will continue their efforts to persuade the management of SPRINT Senior Care to adopt a pension plan for front line workers.
For more information, please contact:
Kelly O’Sullivan, President, CUPE Local 4308, 416-529-9600
Mary Unan, CUPE Communications, 905-739-39999, Ext. 378, or 416-206-5609 (Cell)