Labour dispute continues with CNE just days away
On July 20, union members were locked out after months of negotiations for a new collective agreement, International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees Local 58 said.
“They have not come to us and asked us to go back to the table,” said Justin Antheunis, President of IATSE Local 58.
One of the major sticking points involves bringing in outside workers to work on shows on the Exhibition grounds.
“We have been doing this work in Toronto for decades the city wants other people to come in and take the work from Toronto workers,” Antheunis said.
But Cllr. Justin Di Ciano, vice-chair of Exhibition Place Board or Governors said the move is to be more “competitive.”
“Now, you have events that have their own specialized staff that travel … so what you have is job shadowing. You have very expensive labour standing around watching these shows set themselves up,” he said.
The affected venues include BMO Field, Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Coca Cola Coliseum, Enercare Centre and the Liberty Grand.
The union president said they plan on picketing throughout the CNE.
“We are going to have to have a presence here and let the public know that when they are coming, this is what the city of Toronto is doing,” Antheunis said.
But Di Ciano said there will be no disruption once CNE attendees are on the fair grounds.
“It might be a little disruptive for guests coming in but once you’re in it’s business as usual,” he said.
With Files from The Canadian Press.
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