An OPSEU union rally and lunchtime BBQ turned out to be a boisterous celebration today (Saturday).
On the very day that the strike by 96 employees working for Community Living Campbellford/Brighton turned one month old came word that a tentative agreement had
been reached between OPSEU, local 316, and management for Community Living.
The two sides had been negotiating with the aid of a mediator at a Cobourg hotel at the same time a rally attended by around 150 union members and supporters was taking place in downtown Campbellford.
The only issue left on the table to negotiate was a demand from Community Living that the use of personal vehicles to transport clients be a “condition of employment” with the agency.
Sources indicate there had been movement on the personal vehicle issue and a tentative agreement was reached before noon hour today.
The Ontario Public Service Employee Union members will vote on the 2 year contract tomorrow (Sunday).
Meanwhile, the star of the show at today’s union rally was OPSEU President Warren “Smokey” Thomas. He had high praise for both local 316’s leadership and its members.
Thomas said Ministry of Community and Social Services officials had taken a lot of notes in recent meetings with Community Living Campbellford/Brighton workers because they knew what they were talking about when it came to improving services and care for the agency’s clients, who are people with serious mental and physical challenges.
The union head also slammed Community Living’s Executive Director Nancy Brown and said he hoped and expected the Ministry would soon do a “management review”.
He scoffed at the worker/manager ratio at Community Living, which employs 96 unionized workers and 22 management personnel.