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Ontario carpenters join crane operators on the picket line

15,000 members in the ICI sector walk off the job
Ont Constructors
(United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America Facebook photo)

All members of the Carpenter’s District Council of Ontario (CDCO), United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America in the industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) sector have gone on a province-wide strike as of May 9.

In a May 5 news release, the union said its members voted by a “huge margin to reject the employers’ last offer."

More than 15,000 members working under the Provincial ICI Collective Agreement headed to the picket line one minute past midnight on May 9.

“Nobody wants to go on strike”, said Mike Yorke, the CDCO’s President and Director of Public Affairs and Innovation in a statement, “and our union hasn’t been on strike in the ICI sector for 34 years but our members, from one side of the province to the other, have now voted overwhelming to tell their employers that we want a fair deal.

Crane operators in Ontario went on strike last week.

“Carpenters, like other construction workers, kept working on job sites to build critical infrastructure all the way through the COVID crisis. Their work was seen as essential during the pandemic and because of this, and because of spiralling cost of living increases, our union and our members believe that wages now have to be increased,” said Yorke, who remained hopeful employers will return to the bargaining table.

The Carpenters’ District Council of Ontario is composed of 17 affiliated local unions of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners across the province.

In total, we represent some 25,000 women and men working in a wide range of skilled trades, including carpentry, drywall, resilient flooring, concrete formwork, underwater construction, welding, scaffolding, and a long list of other construction-related work.