By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday June 22, 2011
Back-to-work Legislation in the making
Canada Post workers are gathering in the heart of Toronto’s downtown to rally against the federal government’s attempt to force them to go back to work if a contract agreement can’t be struck.
John Cartwright, the president of Toronto and York region labour council, said he expects hundreds to gather at the rally Wednesday morning at the intersection of Yonge and Dundas streets.
In addition to postal workers, workers from every sector of the economy are expected to attend the rush-hour rally at one of the busiest corners in the city.
Those people, Cartwright said, are standing up for the next generation of Canadian workers who deserve the same wages and benefits his generation received. As of about 8:30 a.m., more than 100 workers had assembled at Yonge and Dundas, surrounded by loudspeakers and carrying placards emblazoned with slogans like “negotiate not legislate.”
The rally comes two days after the Conservative government in Ottawa tabled back-to-work legislation. Parliament spent much of the day Tuesday debating the legislation, which would force workers to go back to work should the union, CUPW, and management fail to reach a deal on a new contract.
The government hopes to vote on the legislation Thursday.
Canada Post locked out workers on June 14, after 12 days of rotating strikes launched by the union. The two sides met for talks on Tuesday (Source: CBC News)