From the Front Lines: Day 13

We spent more time in the community this week, speaking to Mississauga residents about our cause, and giving the gift of free storytimes. Here are some reports.

Malton

“I had a customer tell me yesterday that he calls 3-1-1 everyday to find out when the library will be open. He asked what else he could do and I told him to continue to call everyday and also contact the emails and phone numbers on the flyer I gave him.

“Many people I spoke to are outraged by the strike and the way the City is treating us. I also talked to a mom and her daughter dropping other small children off at the pool and she was so surprised at how we are being treated and said that I really “shed a light on the true side of the city as an employer”. She’s always suggested to her daughter to try and get a job with the City, but is now second-guessing this choice. She said she’s going to write to everyone and asked for a few extra flyers to spread the word for us.

“I think being at the branches has really made an impact. Of the two days we were at Malton, we had over 400 conversations with customers, many of which sent emails right away from their phones or took flyers/pictures of the email addresses on the flyers. These conversations can sometimes be difficult because you’re not sure how someone will react but most are willing to listen and can feel the passion we have for our cause.”

Meadowvale

“Just came back from Meadowvale Town Centre Metro. I asked a few people and the cashiers whether they are aware of our strike. They said NO. A few of them told me the Meadowvale branch is closed because they are moving to the community centre soon. They were not happy after hearing about the situation. They told me it’s unbelievable. One cashier told me it’s a great loss for the kids. She also told me she thought we were well-paid happy staff with smiles all the time. Another lady told me ‘keep fighting’.”

Port Credit

Storytime!

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From the Front Lines: Day 12

While Ribfest took over Celebration Square, CUPE 1989 members had another satisfying day in our communities. The managers that the City has assigned to “monitor” us (their word) and the special outside security detail came along for the ride. Because, you know, library workers are a big threat to public safety.

In our members’ words and pictures, here is a bit of our day.

Erin Meadows

“I was at Erin Meadows Thursday afternoon. A customer came to return a book. He said he just came back from his vacation and he wasn’t aware of the strike. When I explained our situation and gave him a flyer, he was really mad and told us he would send emails to the Mayor and Sue McFadden. He said: ‘It’s ridiculous, I can’t believe City is treating part-time staff like this.’ He also told us he will be supporting us throughout our fight. He is a customer at Erin Meadows and Meadowvale.”

Frank McKechnie

“The Thursday picket at McKechnie went well. One customer was so upset with the city she called the Mayor right then and there. Of course once we heard that the City was refusing to budge in the talks, we got fired up even more and the flyers were passed out to customers fast and furious. I can’t begin to tell you how angry that piece of news made me, but that is another story. I think it was great getting out to the branch and talking to our customers. It certainly seemed a lot quieter without the library open. … This is a tough fight but we will be there for however long it takes.”

Central

Most of Friday morning my striking buddies and I were on the mall side of the Ribfest and were handing out flyers. We heard some varied stories. We talked to a man who is part of the rotary and is a pastor. He mentioned he was the one that brought water bottles for the strikers. He is totally supportive. We also came across someone who said would call the city and say ‘I would have emailed you, but my access to the internet at the library isn’t currently available’. I thought that was a great line.

Mississauga Valley

“It was a very productive and enjoyable day. We met a family with two kids. One little girl rushed up to hug three of us. We were so touched by this, and obviously their parents were upset about the closure, but they supported us. We are like the usual front people, meeting with our customers. I agree with Rose that we are wonderful staff, and it is the staff who make library successful. However only she has a 7.3% increase.”

Port Credit

“I absolutely loved talking to the public today at Port Credit. We spoke to small business owners. They are completely committed to helping the Library. We also approached people walking the streets. One lady from Australia, who always visits the library with her grandchildren at Port Credit when she visits, was disappointed this year. We also approached a group of young men (18ish); one pipes up and says “I called 311 yesterday”. A page who was with us yesterday and felt uncomfortable approaching people was passing put leaflets and talking to customers – fantastic!!!”

Malton

“Our customers at Malton took our striking to heart. Here’s some of the response from our regulars:

“One customer who is an author (our libraries carry copies of her books) said: ‘This is stupid. Management is making so much money and you guys are doing all the work. I will email Bonnie!’

“Another customer, who is partially blind and comes to Malton every day to borrow the guitar books, said: ‘It is very boring without the library. I really miss it and being in there.’ He said he would email the Mayor.

“A female minister, who we help with printing, said: ‘I can’t believe this is happening. You people are always there for me when I need help, especially with printing my flyers and sermons. I miss it very much and some of your high school students were asking me why was the library not open, we wanted books to study for our summer school. I will definitely write to the Mayor.’

“One college student took a pile of flyers from me and said she would pass them around to all her friends. She said: ‘We support you fully and love the library.’

“Another regular customer said: ‘Management should be flexible and treat staff in a more humane way. This is really sad!’ He comes to the library every day with his children to use the computers. He said: ‘Poor people, the homeless and students needs the library!’ He said in his former country he has nothing like the library. He said he will write to the Mayor!”

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Burnhamthorpe

About 20 of us covered the front doors and a highly visible intersection at the corner of Burnhamthorpe and Dixie. We had pink CUPE flags and three picket signs that indicated we work at the library. We handed out dozens of pink flyers and continuously urged people to contact the mayor. Several buses stop at that location, and everyone who got off was made aware of our cause, if he or she wasn’t already. The overwhelming majority of those we encountered were highly supportive. Even three police cars honked! The best part, again, was how our group came together across all job classifications: full-timers, part-timers and pages. Twenty-year veterans and relative rookies.

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And in case you missed it, from Friday’s Mississauga News:
Mississauga Library Workers’ Union President Alleges City Pulling ‘Nasty Tricks’ During Strike

Please sign our petition, and tell the City of Mississauga: Give your library workers a fair deal!

Bonnie Crombie, Mayor
905-896-5555
mayor@mississauga.ca

John Kovac, Library Board / Council
905-896-5400
john.kovac@mississauga.ca

Matt Mahoney, Library Board / Council
905-896-5800
matt.mahoney@mississauga.ca

For more information, contact Laura Kaminker, President, CUPE Local 1989, at 647-200-1481.

From the Front Lines: Day 11

On Thursday, striking Mississauga library workers visited various branches in the system to talk with members of the community. Here are some reports and pictures.

Clarkson

“Our group was quite small, but had a big impact. We saw many patrons that attend our programs regularly. Many were picking up children from camp and were happy and surprised to see us. All were very supportive. One lady took the letter and walked away, then came back to tell us how much she supported us and how wrong it was that our Library Director got a 7.3% raise along with what City Manager Janice Baker makes ($280,000/year).

“We even had two patrons that are both former employees show up to support us, and bring us a snack. One even went to Staples to photocopy more handouts for us!! This was amazing and we were so grateful since we had almost ran out of flyers by then. We are looking forward to seeing more patrons tomorrow!”

Mississauga Valley

“People in general were happy to see us. Most of customers took our flyers and stop to talk. We took turns walking around to the back of the building and also approached families around the splash pad. Our storytime – in both English and Spanish – went very well. It was a lot of fun.”

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Port Credit

“A good day at Port Credit. We had a lady pull in with Timbits. She is so angry with the way we have been treated. I think she was also at Central on Wednesday with treats. She is a Lorne Park patron. She has emailed and called. It’s nice to know we have someone on our side. We walked Lakeshore and engaged people; no one refused our flyer. One business owner taped it on his front window facing out for all to see.

“Customers were very supportive. Every person we talked to promised to email the mayor (they didn’t even want to call 311). One man said he is a fellow union member and would email the Mayor as soon as he got home. Three mothers, each with three kids, were disgusted by how the library staff has been treated. They’ve been attending various programs at Port Credit and Lakeview and also promised to email the Mayor. One 7-year-old girl wanted to hear a story so we sat down on the grass, reading. I told her we’d be back tomorrow if she wants to hear more stories. (She asked her mother if they can come back.)

“I talked with around two dozen people today in Port Credit, and after I briefly explained some of the issues, every single one of them was on board with our cause and very supportive – even the ones who were initially hesitant. We also paid a visit to MPP and Ontario Finance Minister Charles Souza’s office. He wasn’t in, but we said our piece to his desk staff and left our flyer. They seemed supportive, too.”

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Malton

“We had people stationed at both entrances and then rotated shifts of people walking the perimeter, going close to the transit hub, and splash pad. One of us tallied the number of meaningful conversations we had as we ‘roved’ – approximately 200 conversations in total!

“EVERY customer we spoke to was supportive and some sent emails while waiting for their kids to come out of programs. Malton Neighbourhood Services took flyers to give to LINC students who apparently are waiting every morning for the library to open. Malton Neighbourhood Services are supportive and are sending emails. They are also bringing flyers to the Malton United for Youth meeting this Tuesday.”

Sheridan

“I went to Service Ontario in the Sheridan mall and got stopped by customers there. They all want to see is back at work, but are totally supportive of our fight. One daily customer told me her story of her precarious work at the shoe store. Not one customer yet has offered anything but support. Every conversation reminds me why I go to work every day and love my job – the public we serve!”

Erin Meadows

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Frank McKechnie

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Streetsville

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Support Library Workers!

Please sign our petition, and tell the City of Mississauga: Give your library workers a fair deal!

Bonnie Crombie, Mayor
905-896-5555
mayor@mississauga.ca

John Kovac, Library Board / Council
905-896-5400
john.kovac@mississauga.ca

Matt Mahoney, Library Board / Council
905-896-5800
matt.mahoney@mississauga.ca

For more information, contact Laura Kaminker, President, CUPE Local 1989, at 647-200-1481.

Two Outstanding Letters of Support

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!

Letter #1:

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.

Letter #2:

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,

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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.

From the Front Lines: Day 10

Five of our members reported on the early-morning disruption of traffic coming into the parking garages!

Report #1:

As we were picketing the entrance to the Civic Center parking garage this morning, word came down that Rose Vespa was spotted in the line of cars — we created a back-up as far as Rathburn! — so anticipation was running high: flags were waving, whistles were blowing, and chants were chanted (“Rose Vespa, be a leader! Be a leader, now!“). As she approached the City Centre garage entrance, Rose gave us a timid wave and proceeded to the entrance to the library garage — where another group of members awaited. Rather than enter the library garage, Rose continued to Burnhamthorpe and went around the block, apparently parking in the Living Arts Centre.

Realizing that there was no underground connection between the Living Arts Centre and the Civic Centre, a bunch of us hustled to the north side of the Civic Centre to await her arrival. Sure enough, after a few minutes she emerged and made her way across to the Civic Centre entrance. I was a little late arriving to the scene, but our members stationed there greeted her with signs, flags, whistles, and chants. All members were civil and respectful during the entire process. I feel that this “blockade” of the Civic Center parking garage was our most effective demonstration yet.

Report #2:

It was an exciting morning! Many of us were at the north exec doors when the street was closing down, so a small contingent waited there and the rest of us went to the east side entrance. They were not blocking the entrance at that time, so we decided it was high time to start. Many of the city staff were supportive and waited patiently, but others were furious! The line extended as far as the eye could see. Someone said that Rose was waiting in the line.

When the car in front of Rose was held back, it became obvious that she was going to go straight rather than in that entrance. The car was let through and the chants/whistles were super loud. A few members actually stepped into the road to block her and security asked them to get back on the sidewalk. The group started towards the Central entrance chanting and whistling, etc. when Rose decided rather than being held up by her “valued staff” (!) she was going to drive around – even though she spent all that time waiting in line! It was about 10 AM by that time. Several people went back to the north side by Civic Centre rightly guessing that she was going to park at Living Arts and walk across.

Apparently, Rose crossed the street with an escort. Several people, mostly pages, were chanting and yelling at her to do something. The staff she encountered in the Civic Centre said she was polite and said, Good morning. We believe that she notified security that she was in line because two or three city security came out before she made it to the front of the line.

Report #3:

It was a very exciting day at the Parking Garages. The level of excitement in the Rose cat & mouse was riveting.

The Exec garage was off limits – that road was closed due to Ribfest. Picketers blocked Civic Centre and Library parking entrances. When they found that drivers were going in the Civic Centre exit they blocked that as well. This tactic was so successful that traffic was backed up right to the 403. RibFest trucks were also in the mix so it was noisy.

Soon after I got there Rose was identified in the jam sometime after 9 AM. We chanted: “Rose Vespa be a leader – Be a leader now!” She ignored us. We were prepared to block her at whatever entrance she used. When she got to the CC lot entrance, members spontaneously fanned out on the street in front of her and chanted. A rental security guard herded them back and Rose drove past this entrance. She also drove by the library lot and turned right at Burhamthorpe.

We assumed she would either park at the Living Arts Centre or try to come back thinking we’d given up. A small group walked up to LAC. Rose walked out of LAC (no underground walkway) and crossed to CC. Our group met her there and chanted. Rose kept her head down and rushed into CC.

Report #4:

Princess Royal Drive was being closed to set up carnival rides for Ribfest. A majority of members moved from the Executive Parking Garage and started to block all the entrances to the Civic Center and Central Library. At some point, a member realized that Rose was in the line of traffic attempting to enter the building. She ended up bypassing both entrances and parked in the Living Arts Center parking. We chanted “Rose Vespa, be a leader! Be a leader NOW!” We also did a very vocal: “What do we want? JUSTICE! When do we want it? NOW!

Report #5:

As we turned the corner onto Duke of York, we noticed Rose’s car almost parallel to us. We continued on to the main entrance to inform the other members that she was in the line of cars. It appeared as if Rose had a bit of a nervous smile on her face. As soon as Rose was in front of the exit driveway, we started us with our chants.

Once she passed us, I continued to the main entrance garage and participated in a couple of more Rose chants. We realized that she had no intention of entering there, so I hurried over to the library entrance to give them a heads up. Seeing that blocked by us, Rose sped up and turned right.

I decided to head back towards the executive entrance on the chance she would end up in that vicinity once more. We stopped at the back doors of City Hall. There was a large gathering of people at the far corner. We saw Rose and another woman halfway across the road. We started the Rose chant. She had a nervous smile as she made her way into City Hall. She avoided all eye contact with us. Each time we said the chant, we got louder, until the door closed.

Bargaining Ream Re-Grouping

The bargaining team met today to regroup and strategize. Our rep led us through an interesting reflection exercise about the strike — what’s going well, what we’re gaining through the process, what are the challenges. The positive column was WAY longer than the negative! And the few negatives were just down to lack of experience and a steep learning curve.

In the positive column were words like:
Unity
Solidarity
Cohesion
Strength
Empowerment
Communication
Friendship

Tomorrow a few representatives of the bargaining team will meet with a few reps of the Employer. We don’t know what to expect, but at least we’ll be communicating.

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Support Library Workers!

Please sign our petition, and tell the City of Mississauga: Give your library workers a fair deal!

Bonnie Crombie, Mayor
905-896-5555
mayor@mississauga.ca

John Kovac, Library Board / Council
905-896-5400
john.kovac@mississauga.ca

Matt Mahoney, Library Board / Council
905-896-5800
matt.mahoney@mississauga.ca

For more information, contact Laura Kaminker, President, CUPE Local 1989, at 647-200-1481.

From the Front Lines: Day Nine

1989 making noise!!!

The cacerolazo was awesome! We had so much fun banging and honking and marching. We were loud and proud — and you know our Employer was listening! Thanks to everyone who helped make this special afternoon/evening happen. Look for videos on Facebook and Twitter.

Once again, we had great support from CUPE Ontario and the Peel District CUPE Council, along with several people from my own activist network.

Back to the table

Tomorrow the 1989 bargaining team is meeting to regroup and talk about the road ahead. The following day, Thursday, we are meeting with the Employer. I will update you on any developments as soon as I can.

Numbers!

Based on all the cheques that our strike payroll team wrote, almost three hundred members picketed last week. That is the highest turnout we’ve ever had — for anything — that I’m aware of. And that was before many members returned from their vacations! Well done!!

 

CUPE Summer of the Strike

Currently 1989 is one of four CUPE locals on strike, and several more on the verge of walking out. This level of fightback has not been seen for a long time. Striking is contagious — other locals look on and say, hey, that’s an option, maybe we need to take that route. If you’re curious about the issues, try these links: CUPE Ontario News and CUPE Ontario Strike Support.

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Please support us! Sign our petition, and tell the City of Mississauga: Give your library workers a fair deal!

Bonnie Crombie, Mayor
905-896-5555
mayor@mississauga.ca

John Kovac, Library Board / Council
905-896-5400
john.kovac@mississauga.ca

Matt Mahoney, Library Board / Council
905-896-5800
matt.mahoney@mississauga.ca

For more information, contact Laura Kaminker, President, CUPE Local 1989, at 647-200-1481.

From the Front Lines: Day Eight (Signs!)

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Please support us! Sign our petition, and tell the City of Mississauga: Give your library workers a fair deal!

Bonnie Crombie, Mayor
905-896-5555
mayor@mississauga.ca

John Kovac, Library Board / Council
905-896-5400
john.kovac@mississauga.ca

Matt Mahoney, Library Board / Council
905-896-5800
matt.mahoney@mississauga.ca

For more information, contact Laura Kaminker, President, CUPE Local 1989, at 647-200-1481.

From the Front Lines: Day Eight

Another amazing day!

Please support us! Sign our petition, and tell the City of Mississauga: Give your library workers a fair deal!

Bonnie Crombie, Mayor
905-896-5555
mayor@mississauga.ca

John Kovac, Library Board / Council
905-896-5400
john.kovac@mississauga.ca

Matt Mahoney, Library Board / Council
905-896-5800
matt.mahoney@mississauga.ca

For more information, contact Laura Kaminker, President, CUPE Local 1989, at 647-200-1481.

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From the Front Lines: Day Five

I have been staring at my computer screen, trying to figure out how to describe the amazing day we had, and how to express my feelings about what we’re creating together. Not an easy task.

Plus, my members keep posting awesome pics and vids to Facebook and YouTube and getting me distracted!!

Good Morning, City Hall!

More than 50 members gathered at the VIP parking entrance to welcome the City brass on their way to work. Apparently City Manager Janice Baker was among them! I was home responding to members’ questions, but I heard it was really LOUD and really FUN.

Then, sometime later, I got a call from an anonymous source who works for the City. The person said that our action drove the City nuts!! The councillors were furious, security was on the walkie-talkies calling for backup, total panic.

This source gave us a rare opportunity to see that our actions are having an impact! And that was just noise! We didn’t stop any cars — and we’re allowed to!

Later in the day, a member read an email from Baker to City employees about how to deal with the picket line — and encouraging staff to work at home. The City of Mississauga normally is not flexible about alternative working arrangements, but they’re making an exception for us!

Knowing this, we decided to also say goodbye to City Hall at the end of the day. And we heard that many City workers leave early on Friday, so after the late-morning pep talk, groups of members hustled over to all the garage entrances and exits.

Hello, Fred Hahn!

In the afternoon, we had a surprise visit from CUPE Ontario President Fred Hahn. Fred is a legendary labour activist — an absolute staunch supporter of the rank-and-file (that’s us) and an open, transparent, inclusive, welcoming union. He’s someone I really admire, so I was excited to see him on our line!

Fred, Eddie Pereira from Peel District CUPE Council, and I walked around City Hall gathering the groups of members who were at the exits. Then Eddie showed us how it’s done! We are allowed to detain people and cars going in and out of City Hall. Many of our members were amazed… in a good way!

Then Fred and Eddie marched with us from one garage exit to the next, chanting “Where Is — Bon-nie, Where Is — Bon-nie.” Little did we know we were about to find out!

Hello, Mayor Crombie!

We were having a mini pep rally, when along comes Craig, a member, calling “Possible Bonnie sighting!!” We grabbed flags and ran down to City Hall, and sure enough, there she was.

The Mayor was taking part in a small ceremony to raise the Pride flag, the first time the Pride flag has been flown at Mississauga City Hall. We formed a semi-circle around the ceremony, and were quiet and respectful while the ceremony continued. Meanwhile our allies from CUPE Ontario were deciding what we would chant when the ceremony was over!

The Pride flag went up, and we started on “2-4-6-8 Why won’t you negotiate?” and other fun stuff. Meanwhile, Bobby Nand, our CUPE rep, had infiltrated the ceremony and was speaking in the Mayor’s ear! Apparently security tried to stop Bobby, but seriously, is there any stopping Bobby?

Bobby said the mayor would speak with us! So we all moved into the shade, and waited quietly with our flags and our signs.

Mayor Crombie came over to us, shook my hand, and introduced herself: “I’m Bonnie.” OK… I’m Laura.

I told “Bonnie”: we love our jobs, we are very proud of the quality services we provide — she said “famous for” — and we want to work. But we want to be treated fairly and with respect. We feel our requests are modest and reasonable. And we want to return to the bargaining table.

She said: Yes, we want to talk, too. I understand the offer that was tabled was fair and competitive, but let’s talk, let’s get back to the table.

We shook hands, everyone cheered, and security took her away.


What does the Mayor’s statement mean?

We will do our best to hold the City to the Mayor’s wish to get us back to the table. And we will continue our strike until we have a fair contract.

The acknowledgement list continues to grow

Today we want to acknowledge the support of:

Michelle Bilek, NDP, Peel Regional Diversity Roundtable
Lidia, Nubian, Manjeet, and Sonia, CUPE 4912, CAS
Tim and his son Liam, CUPE 2544 & 9130
Ryan, CUPE 3902, CUPE Ontario LGBT
Victoria, CUPE 4400, CUPE Ontario Disability
Ilija, UFCW 1006A, for being out there for us every single day
Harman and Julia, Kind snacks
Sandi’s husband who brought us freezies
Lucy who brought homemade cookies
Eric who brought watermelon — and a bugle!
With apologies because I’m sure there were many others!

A word about leafletting

City security has been telling us we are not allowed to hand out flyers in some places, and allowed to in other places. This is not true. The City has instructed security to say this, and the City is hoping we don’t know any better, and we’ll go away.

But we are participating in a legal strike. It is our right — guaranteed by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms — to express ourselves and associate freely. Leafletting falls under that right. We will always be respectful, of course, but there’s no such thing as not allowed to distribute flyers in a public, City space.

We are not picketing on the weekend

Time to rest, relax, enjoy our family and friends, wash our pink shirts, and see each other on Monday.

Congratulations to us on making through our first week of striking!!

I’ll close this update with a quote from a member, from after the City reneged on its agreement to honour pre-approved vacations.

The City obviously doesn’t know their library workers very well!

They’re making the hazardous assumptions that we lack resilience, strength, intelligence, spirit, energy, and, of course, Solidarity.

Low blows by the city might sting but won’t knock us out. They’re underestimating us and it’s a mistake.

I know that everyone is out there grinding the pavement and hustling to send our message. I’m not surprised because it’s the same hustle and strength we bring to our jobs every day. We are the ones on the front lines making libraries work and connecting with customers on so many different levels.

We’re not made of fragile glass. We won’t break that easily.

Please support us! Sign our petition, and tell the City of Mississauga: Give your library workers a fair deal!

Bonnie Crombie, Mayor
905-896-5555
mayor@mississauga.ca

John Kovac, Library Board / Council
905-896-5400
john.kovac@mississauga.ca

Matt Mahoney, Library Board / Council
905-896-5800
matt.mahoney@mississauga.ca

For more information, contact Laura Kaminker, President, CUPE Local 1989, at 647-200-1481.

“We’re not made of fragile glass. We won’t break that easily.”

Yesterday the City of Mississauga reneged on its agreement to honour pre-approved vacations. People who were expecting vacation pay suddenly did not receive it.

I emailed members to deliver the bad news, and to make it clear that the Employer is trying to make it harder for us to strike, to drive a wedge into our solidarity, and to break the strike.

Here’s how one member responded.

The City obviously doesn’t know their library workers very well!

They’re making the hazardous assumptions that we lack resilience, strength, intelligence, spirit, energy, and, of course, Solidarity.

Low blows by the city might sting but won’t knock us out. They’re underestimating us and it’s a mistake.

I know that everyone is out there grinding the pavement and hustling to send our message. I’m not surprised because it’s the same hustle and strength we bring to our jobs every day. We are the ones on the front lines making libraries work and connecting with customers on so many different levels.

We’re not made of fragile glass. We won’t break that easily.