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Woodstock, Ont. Oxford County Public Health workers, represented by the
Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), could be on strike early next
month over the employer’s demands to cut off benefits for workers over the
age of 65.
All workers should be treated equally and with respect, said Heather
Grassick, national representative for CUPE 1146. It is unacceptable to
discriminate against workers, who want to continue working and promoting
public health, by suddenly cutting off their health benefits, just because
they turn 65.
Union representatives requested a no-board’ report from the provincial
mediator last night, after conciliation talks broke off, triggering a
countdown to a lockout or legal strike deadline of 12:01 am, March 6. The
workers voted 100 per cent in favour of a strike if a fair settlement cannot
be reached with their employer.
CUPE 1146 members provide health inspection, health promotion, and
administrative services in Oxford County. The workers’ last contract expired
on December 31, 2006. In addition to age discrimination targeting workers
over 65, wage parity for some of the 31 public health workers, remains an
Management must come back to mediation without their age discrimination
agenda, said Grassick. Otherwise we will have no choice but to take strike
action to stop the County from discriminating against their own workers.
For further information, please contact:
Heather Grassick James Chai
CUPE National Representative CUPE Communications