Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

February 20, 2014 10:10 ET

Ontario Labour Relations Board orders CESAR to end illegal lockout against CUPE 1281 on Ryerson campus

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb. 20, 2014) - The Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) has ordered the Continuing Education Students' at Ryerson (CESAR) to end its illegal lockout of two full-time employees, members of Local 1281 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE 1281).

The decision follows a complaint to the OLRB by CUPE National on behalf of Local 1281 earlier this month, alleging CESAR was engaging in an unlawful lockout of its two Local 1281 Members.

After hearing the matter, the OLRB sided with CUPE 1281's position and ordered the CESAR executive to make the necessary return-to-work preparations. It also ordered that CESAR provide back-pay to employees for the period they were illegally locked out.

In response to CUPE'S application to the OLRB, CESAR's lawyer, William Hayter, communicated news of President Shinae Kim's resignation from the CESAR. He also claimed that two executive board positions out of five remain filled, but that one member is "on vacation," and the other is "in the United States."

The illegal lockout and President Shinae Kim's unexpected resignation come in the aftermath of the legal lockout President Kim initiated against her organization's employees at the end of September 2013.

That lockout was legally resolved over three weeks ago on January 28th, when the CESAR executive and CUPE 1281 reached a settlement at the OLRB offices. That settlement was ratified by CUPE 1281 members three days later.

However, the CESAR executive did not follow-through with the agreement. When CUPE 1281 sought instructions from the CESAR executive regarding when and how CESAR employees should return to work they received no response. CUPE 1281 wrote repeatedly to CESAR President Shinae Kim asking for instructions on behalf of their members, and did not receive a response. In the same period CUPE 1281 members attempted to return to work at the CESAR offices and each time found the office shut and the door locked.

Saira Chhibber, President of CUPE 1281, thanked the OLRB for its quick decision.

"Our members appreciate the OLRB's speedy decision, and are relieved to finally have a clear path to return to work," said Chhibber.

"We hope students will have a more functional and accountable CESAR executive in the near future, as they have in the past," she added.

Contact Information

  • Saira Chhibber
    President CUPE 1281
    C: 416-906-6140

    Kevin Wilson
    CUPE Communications