A voicemail left by a Hamilton NDP MPP that questions the union COPE, which represents office workers, including those employed at Queen’s Park, may raise a few eyebrows.
The voicemail was sent by Hamilton East-Stoney Creek MPP Paul Miller to a member of his office staff.
CHML was sent a copy of the email. Among the more eye-popping quotes:
“Sometimes unions do more harm than good and sometimes they get their people into bad situations.”
Miller is a New Democrat, a party that is backed by many big unions and which is one of the three main parties running in the June 7 provincial election.
You can hear the voicemail:
Miller was criticizing the union COPE, which represents office workers including those employed at Queen’s Park, in a voicemail to one of his staffers, Todd White, who is also chairman of Hamilton’s public school board.
White was on parental leave for 10 months in 2016 and one of Miller’s complaints was that White didn’t stay in touch during that time.
Miller is heard on the voicemail, which was sent to CHML’s The Bill Kelly Show, saying:
“There’s going to be big changes, real quick, in the the next few months, or it’s going to be an ugly situation. When someone doesn’t communicate with me for almost a year, you got to wonder what they are up to and wonder where their loyalty is.”
White has filed a grievance with COPE over his treatment by Miller.
White has hired lawyer Wade Poziomka of Ross & McBride LLP of Hamilton.
When contacted by Global News Radio 900 CHML, Miller’s office issued this statement.
“I have expressed my frustrations with Mr. White’s job performance on a number of occasions directly to Mr. White, and through the ONDP caucus to his union. These frustrations and concerns are now the subject of the grievances currently subject to arbitration. I am confident that the process will resolve fairly, and demonstrate that I acted reasonably, in good faith, and consistent with my obligations under the collective agreement.” — Paul Miller, MPP Hamilton East-Stoney Creek
COPE’s annual general meeting is set for Hamilton the weekend of May 5-6.