UFCW Canada

UFCW Canada

October 07, 2011 15:10 ET

H&M Mississauga Workers Vote YES for the Union!

First Unionized H&M Store in Canada

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 7, 2011) - A majority of workers at an H&M store in Mississauga, Ontario have voted "Yes" to UFCW Canada representation. The votes were tallied immediately following a secret ballot certification vote held Thursday, October 6 at the H&M location in the Square One Shopping Centre in Mississauga, Ont.

The victory for the workers (called "sales advisors" by the company) will make their store the first of H&M's more than 50 Canadian locations to be unionized. With a certificate expected shortly from the Ontario Labour Relations Board, first-contract negotiations could begin before the end of the year.

The new members are mostly college-age, and work as cashiers, merchandisers, and shelf stockers.

"This victory belongs to all of the members at the Square One H&M store who from the start were determined to form a union. They never lost their energy or enthusiasm to stand up for their rights and make their store a better place to work," says national representative Kevin Shimmin, a member of the UFCW Canada organizing team.

The workers were also encouraged by the fact that UFCW/RWDSU had recently organized and negotiated a good first-contract at sixteen of the Swedish company's H&M stores in New York City. The Square One H&M workers' organizing efforts were also buoyed by an internationally coordinated solidarity campaign by UNI Global Union and unionized H&M workers in Sweden and across Europe.

"Good things happen when workers stand together," says UFCW Canada National President Wayne Hanley. "We welcome the new members at H&M, and we congratulate them for opening the door for other Canadian H&M workers to stand in solidarity and organize."

"We also look forward to the same kind of good positive working relationship with H&M that already exists at its other unionized locations in the USA and Europe."

UFCW Canada is Canada's largest private sector-union with more than 250,000 members working primarily in the food, retail and service sectors.

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