Painters end strike, agree to arbitration

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Image from the IUPAT Facebook page

Michael Lewis

Special to Ontario Construction News

Members of the painters’ union in the ICI sector voted 75 per cent in favour of ending a strike and return to work and to have the renewal of their collective agreement determined by binding arbitration. Wage increases imposed by the arbitrator will be retroactive to July 3.

Painters and tapers, members of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT), walked off the job in Ontario on June 20, joining the 500 glaziers in the union who cut and install glass and who went on strike on June 13 amid a building boom in the province, particularly in the GTA.

The tapers and painters rejected a tentative agreement reached between the union officials and the contractors bargaining agency for an $8 an hour increase over three years for the tapers and $5 for the painters.

A special meeting has been called for Wednesday June 29 for IUPAT members working under the glaziers ICI collective agreement to vote on proposed changes to the agreement and to update members on ongoing negotiations with employers. IUPAT interior system members in the residential sector, meanwhile, have received a series of specific adjustments  for a total arbitrated monetary increase of 16 per cent over three years for all of the province excluding the London and Ottawa areas.

Three year construction industry contracts across Ontario expired April 30 with the majority of the province’s ICI trades negotiating new deals for wage hikes ranging from 9 per cent to 12 per cent over the length of the agreements.

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