Frustrated Greenway Village Employees Leave CUPE, Join CLAC
Brampton, ON—On November 2, employees of Greenway Retirement Village voted 97 percent in favour of changing unions to Health Care and Service Workers Union, CLAC Local 304, from CUPE Local 5246.
Greenway is a retirement residence in Brampton providing a continuum of care for approximately 220 seniors in a variety of independent, assisted living, and memory care suites as well as townhouses.
The 99 employees providing care to the residents had been represented by CLAC up until October 2014 when they elected to join CUPE by a slim two-vote majority.
“Despite our disappointment in the outcome at the time, it is our belief that employees should have the right to select the union of their choice—even when it cuts the other way,” says Michael Glockner, CLAC representative. “We were approached earlier this fall by employees who expressed frustration that CUPE had not lived up to the promises that it had made during their campaign in 2014 to displace CLAC.
“The first thing the employees noticed was that they no longer had the support of a full-time professional union representative. They were surprised to discover that they were on their own with little or no direction or support.”
The employees waited 29 months for CUPE to reach an arbitrated settlement for a first collective agreement with their employer.
“The outcome of their settlement was inferior compared to what we achieved for our members at a sister home in the same area, owned by the same company,” says Kevin Gates, CLAC representative.
With the expiry of their collective agreement, employees had the opportunity to change unions once again and contacted CLAC representatives. After a short campaign, they voted overwhelmingly in favour of returning to CLAC Local 304.
“Many employees expressed their frustrations leading up to the vote and wanted to have a voice in their workplace again,” says Glockner. “We are certainly happy to welcome them home.”