Here are two outstanding letters from two of our customers to Mayor Bonnie Crombie in support of our strike and our fight for fairness and respect!
Dear Mayor Crombie,
I’d like to say I’m hugely disappointed in the current strike situation with the city’s library staff. I’d also like to make it clear that my disappointment rests firmly with the city. Serious efforts should have been made at the bargaining table to avoid a strike – especially during the summer when so many families rely on library services for their children.
It’s clear that our library workers are not valued and that the city is doing its best to deny them the right to earn a decent living wage, while other city bureaucrats – such as the Library Director – received a 7.36% increase.
Library staff are the public face of city staff at work in our communities. Librarians do more than just check out books. They are teachers and facilitators who create valued programs and learning opportunities for all library users. They also help build strong communities by transforming our libraries into local meeting places.
Our librarians in turn need to be valued for this vitally important work they do. They all deserve decent wages, and part-time library workers in particular deserve a decent benefit package, paid sick time, paid bereavement leave, and paid vacation.
As our mayor I’d like to know what you’re personally doing to resolve this situation fairly and equitably. Mississauga is one of the most heavily taxed municipalities in Canada, and surely it should be able to manage its budget effectively enough to provide fair pay and benefits to all city staff – not just senior bureaucrats and politicians.
I look forward to your response.
Dear Mayor Crombie,
I am writing this email to you in support of the Mississauga Library workers that are currently on strike.
First thing to bear in mind…….nobody wants to strike unless they absolutely feel they have to. These workers need the money to support themselves and their families so the last thing they want to do is put themselves in a position of no job security or no fixed income. The fact that they decided to vote for a work stoppage would tell you how desperate or frustrated they are.
In listening to the news, where the union leader is saying that the library workers are making poverty level wages with a 1% increase over the past 2 years, how embarrassing it must be for your office to publicly disclose Ms. Vespa’s salary of $176,000 while this work stoppage is occurring. And as for the 7.3% increase that she received, well, that’s almost 3 times higher than the national average percentage increase as compared to the 1/2% increase (that the library workers received), which is 3 times less than the national average percentage increase. How can you have such opposite ends of the spectrum in the same work environment??
I’ve heard that there is only so much money in the budget so if one group gets an increase, then that means another group will forgo an increase because the City would just shift the money from one side to the other.
To that I say, what poor judgement as far as budgetary forecasting on Ms. Vespa’s part and the fact that she did not foresee a possible labour disruption…………and she still earned 7.3% increase.
And to those people who depend on the library for information or for those families that bring their children to the library for specialty programs, or group readings, etc., what a shame that they are deprived of this “public” library sanctuary that have now been forced to close their doors.
I hope you do the right thing Mayor Crombie, and soon. You need to bring the library workers to a threshold that is equal to most other working groups, as these employees have the same costs and needs as Ms. Vespa.
Thank you for listening,
We thank our supporters so much for every call, email, and letter. Your letters don’t have to be long or elaborate. A simple “I stand with the striking library workers. Pay them fairly. Treat them with respect.” is enough.