LCBO workers across the province on strike

LCBO’s 10,000 workers across the province officially went on strike at 12:01 a.m. Friday morning.

Their union issued this statement:

“For the past several months, we have engaged in collective bargaining with OPSEU in hopes of reaching a fair and equitable agreement that addresses their considerations while ensuring the long-term sustainability of our operations. Despite our best efforts, we have not yet been able to do so (details on LCBO’s proposal can be found here).

LCBO is committed to maintaining the highest standards of service that we can during this challenging time. We have implemented contingency plans to help minimize disruption as much as possible and ensure that our products remain available to our valued retail and wholesale customers. We will be operating our business, but it is not business as usual. As we previously communicated, LCBO’s retail locations are now closed for 14 days while online ordering remains available with free home delivery. Should OPSEU remain on strike after the 14 days period has elapsed, 32 LCBO retail stores will begin to re-open for in-store shopping and operate three days a week (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) with limited hours in effect. The LCBO is continuing to receive and fulfill wholesale orders and beverage alcohol is available through the approximately 2,300 private retail points of sale across the province, including through LCBO Convenience Outlets, licensed grocery stores, The Beer Store, and winery, brewery, cidery, and distillery outlets, as well as at bars and restaurants.

We remain hopeful that we can quickly reach an agreement that is fair to our employees, while enabling the LCBO’s continued success in a changing marketplace. We thank our customers, partners, and communities for their patience and understanding.”

Among the sticking points is the fact LCBO workers are seeking higher wages and an increase in full-time job opportunities as they say part-time roles make up 70 per cent of their workforce.

Ontario Finance Minister Peter Bethlenfalvy’s office said in a statement that it is disappointed by the union’s decision to walk away from the bargaining table hours before the deadline.

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