May 26th, 2024

Unionized workers rejecting more deals as fight for wage gains presses on

By The Canadian Press on May 7, 2024.

Workers and Unifor members strike outside Toronto's Nestle plant after walking off the job Sunday, May 5, 2024. Experts say that workers right now are more willing to reject tentative agreements in bargaining as they try to catch up from the effects of inflation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Cole Burston

Experts say union workers are feeling increasingly emboldened to reject tentative agreements as they fight to join the ranks of those benefitting from the recent wave of wage gains.

McGill University associate professor Barry Eidlin says there’s a clear uptick in workers rejecting deals that have been recommended by their bargaining committees.

He says workers are galvanized by inflation, the pandemic and a decades-long trend of employers having the upper hand.

Over the weekend, workers at a Nestlé chocolate plant in Toronto went on strike after turning down a tentative deal with the chocolate maker.

Eamonn Clarke, president of the Unifor local representing them, says workers’ expectations are much higher now because the cost of living has risen so much.

He says he’s seeing more tentative deals being rejected, or barely passing.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 7, 2024.

Share this story:

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments