Windsor, Ont., workers reject offer as garbage piles up
Striking city workers in Windsor, Ont., have voted against the latest contract offer, their union said Thursday, meaning the 14-week strike that has stopped garbage pickup and other services will continue.
CUPE, the union representing the workers, is not giving precise numbers yet, but said its membership rejected the offer by a large majority.
About 400 workers responsible for road work, gardening, and garbage and recycling pickup walked off the job April 15, while another 1,400 workers in daycare, social services, bylaw enforcement and clerical work went on strike several days later.
A key sticking point in negotiations has been the city's bid to remove post-retirement benefits for new hires. It was unclear whether the latest offer included movement from the city on that issue.
"Absolutely, we are disappointed. We wanted our workers back, we needed our workers back. We wanted to get our city working again," said Windsor Mayor Eddie Francis.
Francis said the offer was "more than fair and reflective of our economic circumstance and the ability of the taxpayer to pay."
The Windsor strike started well before another civic workers strike, which began June 22 in Toronto, also stalled services in Canada's most populous city.