FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 30, 2005
Blood Services faces
July 21st strike deadline
Canadian Blood Services was
given notice Thursday of a potential July 21st strike by
more than 800 support staff across Ontario.
The Ontario Public Service
Employees Union asked conciliator Michele Ryan for a “no
board” report yesterday after the most recent face-to-face
meeting with the employer. The “no board” report will begin
a 17-day countdown towards a legal strike position after it
is filed with the Ministry of Labour.
The Support Unit is the
largest such group in Canada, made up of phlebotomists,
clinic assistants, drivers, lab assistants, and office
staff. A strike would adversely affect the blood system in
the province during peak demand.
“Our goal is to keep up the
pressure to get a deal,” says OPSEU negotiator Ruth
Hamilton. “This employer has a history of dragging their
heels at the bargaining table. The only way to get them to
move forward is to set a strict deadline for job action.”
During the last contract in
2002, Canadian Blood Services spent more than 18 months at
the bargaining table with the union.
OPSEU is optimistic a deal
can be reached before a strike is necessary. The two parties
continue to meet.
The Canadian Blood Services
Support Unit voted 95 per cent in favour of a strike vote in
May. Their contract expired March 31, 2005.
For more information,
contact Ruth Hamilton at 416-443-8888 x 8311.