The International Union of Elevator Constructors (IUEC)

June 29, 2013 13:22 ET

Ontario Elevator Workers Reach Agreement

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - June 29, 2013) - International Union of Elevator Constructors (IUEC) have come to an agreement with the National Elevator and Escalator Association (NEEA) late yesterday afternoon in respect to a contract for Ontario workers represented by locals 50 (Toronto) 90 (Hamilton) and 96 (Ottawa).

"This has been a challenging negotiations that resulted in an unnecessary work stoppage," said Ben McIntyre, chair of the negotiating committee and Business Manager of Local 50. "We achieved all of what we set out at the beginning of negotiations."

The three year agreement includes wage increases, improved working conditions and most importantly preserves the seniority system.

"We want to thank the people of Ontario for their patience through this needless strike, one that was orchestrated by NEEA at the expense of seniors, and those who live and work outside of the GTA," said McIntyre. "From the beginning we offered to work through the discussions but were shut out by NEEA, putting many Ontarians at needless risk and inconvenience."

The public's safety was always a top priority and IUEC launched a public website to record unsafe and worrisome elevators. The website elevatorsafety.ca will stay active to ensure all elevators and elevated devices in need of repair are logged in the interim with the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA).

"NEEA during this whole episode has been less than forthright with the public on the state of negotiations, the servicing of elevators and the priorities they have employed," said McIntyre, adding "The NEEA interpretation of a Labour Code nuance created confusion and hardship for many, because it only benefited select and privileged buildings. And to prove how much disregard they have for the negotiation process, NEEA didn't honour an agreed to media blackout during the negotiations and published a media release announcing the strike's end in advance of an agreement. They seemed more interested in getting off to their cottages for the Canada Day long weekend then settling the outstanding issues."

McIntyre hopes Ontarians will understand that any hard feelings about the strike should be directed towards NEEA and its four member companies of KONE, Otis, Schindler, and ThyssenKrupp Elevator.

"For 25 years we were able to resolve our differences through negotiations," said McIntyre. "This year because NEEA members could not meet production deadlines, they orchestrated a strike situation, and once the deadlines were back on schedule, they declared the strike over - without regard for the chaos they created for Ontarians. Their subterfuge created a new low in respect for the collective bargaining process."

About the IUEC:

The International Union of Elevator Constructors (IUEC) has proudly been repairing, servicing, building and maintaining elevating devices for 100 years in Ontario and represents 1,400 members in Ontario's industrial, commercial and residential elevator construction, service and maintenance sectors, which are responsible for approximately 50,000 elevating devices.

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