Ontario Federation of Labour

Ontario Federation of Labour

June 05, 2013 12:48 ET

Employer Indifference Puts Lives at Risk as 50,000 Elevators Breach Provincial Safety Standards: Workers Rally for Strike Settlement

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - June 5, 2013) - One month after 1,400 Ontario elevator mechanics were forced on strike by an employer coalition with a near monopoly on elevator operation, nearly every one of the province's 50,000 elevators are out of compliance with provincial safety standards and roughly 75 percent are in some form of disrepair. The International Union of Elevator Constructors (I.U.E.C.) Locals 50, 90 and 96 have offered to continue to keep elevators safe and operational throughout bargaining but the employers have refused.

Instead, an employer coalition representing the province's four big elevator companies - Kone, Otis, Schindler and ThyssenKrupp - are protracting the dispute by refusing to bargain, using scab labour and creating a safety crisis. Without monthly elevator inspections for safety compliance and with serious concerns that replacement workers are not trained up to mandatory standards, public safety is being compromised.

The Ontario Federation of Labour is holding a public rally to call on the employers to stop the use of scab labour and get back to the table to negotiate a fair settlement.

What: Rally and march through Toronto's downtown core
Why: Support for striking elevator workers
When: Thursday, June 6 at Noon
Where: Corner of King Street and Bay Street, Toronto
Who: OFL President Sid Ryan, joined by labour groups, community allies and the striking elevator workers

"I'm astonished that the union's offer to keep working throughout bargaining was met with outright refusal by these employers," said OFL President Sid Ryan. "Every day that the employers refuse to negotiate, lives are being put at risk. We cannot wait for a serious accident to occur before employers are forced back to the bargaining table."

About the Ontario Federation of Labour

The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. Visit www.OFL.ca and follow the OFL on Facebook and Twitter @OFLabour.

Contact Information