Times are getting tough for the CF61 TD Centre employees, but not tough enough to break their will to remain on the picket line until they get a favourable ruling from the Ontario Labour Relations Board. But the picket, in its ninth month, is approaching a crossroads.

The CF61 Hardship Fund was recently depleted when disbursements were made to needy locked out and terminated workers.

On June 14, after the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Local 2003 (CEP) and Cadillac Fairview (CF) had failed to reach a collective agreement for either the maintenance/skilled trades or the engineers/building operators, all 61 Toronto-Dominion (TD) Centre workers were locked out by their employer.

CF arranged for third party service providers to carry out all the work during the work stoppage.

A month later, all TD Centre workers were abruptly terminated when CF decided to enter into a permanent agreement with third party service providers.

Since June, the CF61 have picketed during the heat, rain, cold and snow, but are losing some of their members’ participation due to financial hardships. “Losing too many members would be a devastating blow to the many dedicated men on the picket line fighting for their jobs,” said the CF61 Solidarity group.

“We need support on the morning picket line from our other union brothers and sisters to help lift morale on the picket line in downtown Toronto. Please come down to the garageway on the north side of Wellington Street between Bay and York Streets between 7 am and 11 am, Monday through Friday.”

The Ontario Labour Relations Board hearings won’t commence until April and the union said it could be months until the Board makes a ruling.

“If you can’t come to the picket line then donations would be greatly appreciated to help with the financial hardships these dedicated picketers are going through every day of their lives for the last eight and a half months,” said the union.

Donations can be sent to: The CF61 Hardship Fund, c/o Larry Lynch, Business Manager, CEP Local 2003, 105-2065 Dundas Street East, Mississauga, Ontario, L4X 2W1

John Bonnar

John Bonnar is an independent journalist producing print, photo, video and audio stories about social justice issues in and around Toronto.