The workers in the warehouse at T&T Grocery in Scarborough voted on whether to join the UFCW Canada on Monday, July 23. However, due to disagreements between the union and the company about which workers were eligible to vote, the Ontario Labour Relations Board has sealed the ballot box until the issues are resolved. This story from the Globe and Mail outlines the key issues which led to the unionization vote, and this story discusses the vote itself.
One quarter of retail workers are employed in food retail. Conditions in grocery stores and distribution centres vary greatly. A group of workers, many of whom are women and immigrants from China, are voting on whether to join UFCW Local 175. Read more about their issues in this Huffington Post story.
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Workers at the Yorkdale location of luxury retailer, Holt Renfrew, sought to strengthen their collective voice and improve their working lives through unionization. More than 50% of workers signed cards indicating their desire to join a union, thus an application was filed with the Ontario Labour Board by Local 1000A of UFCW Canada. Ontario labour law requires two steps for union certification – first the signing of cards, and then, one week later, a vote in the store. During that week, the company held many meetings and focus groups in order to dissuade workers from voting for the union. When the vote was held, a majority of workers voted against the union.
I spoke with a number of workers at Holt Yorkdale and was very impressed with their intelligence, drive, and strength. Read news coverage of the vote here.