CUPE rallies behind Something Special Children’s Centre workers

Members of CUPE locals through the city came together during a lunchtime rally in front of the Something Special Children’s Centre on Friday, Nov. 8, 2019.

CUPE members from across Kingston rally during lunch hour on November 8 at the Something Special Children’s Centre. Photo by Tommy Vallier

Nearly three dozen CUPE members from a variety of employers marched in front of the daycare centre, which locked out its unionized workers on Friday, Nov. 1, 2019.

“The contract has been expired for a year and a half,” said Fred Hahn, president of CUPE Ontario, who was in Kingston from Toronto to march with and address the workers, “and it’s been a week that our members have been locked out.”

“There is good news. They went back to the [bargaining] table this afternoon. Hopefully this rally and some of the support that’s here helps [those negotiations],” Hahn continued, listing that some employees from the City of Kingston, Kingston General Hospital and Queen’s University were standing among the rally members.

Also spotted at the walk was Ian Arthur, MPP for Kingston and the Islands.

“Strikes and lockouts don’t help anyone,”Arthur commented when asked about the rally. “The families that are affected and the children that are affected, they have relationships with these workers and they need the stability.”

As we reported previously, negotiations have primarily focused on wages, shift length and sick time payouts. For our past coverage of the workers’ stance on the matter, click here. For coverage of the Something Special Children’s Centre Board of Directors’ position, click here.

Kingstonist will continue to monitor this situation and provide updates as information becomes available.

With files from Tori Stafford

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