Union dispute stalls work on Ojibway Parkway, rescheduled for Thursday

A dispute between two unions led to work being halted on Herb Gray Parkway, where a project is ongoing to connect it with the future Gordie Howe International Bridge.

LiUNA Local 625 expects to sit down with the Ironworkers and the employer for a discussion

A project on Ojibway Parkway was halted when a union allegedly took issue with members of a different union being hired for the job. (Rachel Maclean/CBC)

Planned overnight work to extend Herb Gray Parkway to meet the future site of the Gordie Howe International Bridge will resume Thursday after it was stopped by a dispute.

Rob Petroni, business manager for LiUNA Local 625, said members of another union, Ironworkers, showed up to the job site for a peaceful protest on Monday, which got out of hand.

"After about an hour or so, they stormed the site and turned the lights off to the site and stole the keys to the equipment,"  he said. They even "keyed some of the workers' personal vehicles," Petroni alleged. 

According to Petroni, the Ironworkers members were upset that six members of LiUNA were employed for the project.

Mark Butler, director of communications for Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority, says they are aware of the "work stoppage" at the job site for the Ministry of Transportation, but work related to the bridge project hasn't been affected.

Petroni said these types of issues between unions are typically handed in a boardroom in advance, and this issue took him by surprise.

He said the unions will discuss together along with the employer and police to sort things out.

A Ministry of Transportation spokesperson said the work has been rescheduled for Thursday at 10 p.m.

With files from Peter Duck and Flora Pan

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