White-collar workers in Montreal holding one-day strike

Some municipal services will be disrupted Tuesday as thousands of white-collar workers will hold a one-day strike to denounce the province’s proposed changes to their pension plans.

Some services will be disrupted Tuesday as 9,000 workers hold strike to protest pension reform

This is the first time white collar workers in Quebec have taken part in a one-day strike since 1967. (Radio-Canada)

Some municipal services will be disrupted Tuesday as thousands of white-collar workers hold a one-day strike to denounce Bill 3 — the province’s proposed legislation that would bring changes to their pension plans.

Roughly 9,000 workers in Montreal, Kirkland, Dorval and Westmount are expected to be on strike.

Protests began at 6 a.m. outside Montreal City Hall in Old Montreal.

Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre said the strike will mean that some municipal offices will be shut down for the day.

“Although we have signed an agreement on the maintenance of essential services with the white-collar workers’ union, some services to citizens normally carried out by white-collar workers will not be offered — or offered in a reduced fashion,” Coderre said, adding that he hopes the protests will be carried out in a peaceful and respectful manner.

Protest is two-fold

Tuesday's protest is in part reaction to the provincial government's plan to change municipal workers pension plans through Bill 3, legislation set to pass today in the National Assembly. 

Bill 3, introduced in June, would bring employer and employee contributions to a 50/50 split. It could make city employees pay more toward their pensions.

Some retirees might also be on the hook for pension shortfalls to make up for a province-wide pension plan deficit of $4 billion.

The protesting workers say they're also eager to sign a collective agreement.

White-collar workers have been without a deal since 2011. They say the creation of Bill 3 has slowed negotiations to a crawl.

What’s closed

Here is a list of what offices and services will be closed on Tuesday Dec. 2 as a result of the strike:

  • Montreal’s public libraries
  • Accès Montreal offices
  • service counters
  • the Centre d'histoire de Montréal museum
  • 511 Info-travaux line
  • Claims office
  • Montreal municipal court house, except for essential services
  • Borough community centres, arenas, sports centres

Reduced services

Facilities run by the city will remain open, but some of their services will be reduced:

  • Space for Life (Montreal Biodome, Montreal Insectarium, Montreal Botanical Garden, Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium)
  • Claude-Robillard sports complex
  • Nature parks

The protest comes almost one week after municipal workers across the province held a one-day strike.


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