Ford PC government forced to backtrack on proposed changes to allow retail businesses to open on more Stat Holidays

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June 19, 2020

Your Union is relieved to learn that, after a lot of public outcry and push back from Unions and other advocates over the last day or so, that Doug Ford is scrapping proposed changes to how retail businesses could operate on statutory holidays.

“This a good example of why everyone must stay vigilant about the Ford government and their anti-worker tactics,” said President Haggerty. “Just like past changes to allow stores to open Sundays, or 24 hours a day, this proposal would be catering to business and placing the burden of having to decide between family time and working on retail workers once again.”

“Nine statutory holidays out of 365 days is absolutely not a hardship for employers,” said Haggerty. “Our Members work hard to serve the public; especially so these last several months. Only weeks ago, Doug Ford was calling our front-line workers ‘heroes.’ These workers deserve to have the option of taking all nine paid holidays.”

This is one of the reasons that having a Collective Agreement is so important.

“Having provisions to protect paid holidays, make it voluntary to work them, and provide for options and premiums for those who choose to work those days are vital. Our union has always believed that our members and all workers in the retail sector deserve paid holidays. We will continue to fight to have these provisions for our members. And we will continue to lobby government at all levels to make progressive changes that protect workers – not take more away from them.”

Read the Toronto Star article on Ford backing down about the proposal here.

Learn more about how joining UFCW Locals 175 & 633 can improve your working life.


  • On Wednesday, the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services held a technical briefing during which it notified the United Food & Commercial Workers (UFCW) and other Unions of a plan to change legislation that governs how retail business can open on public holidays.
  • At the briefing, representatives for UFCW Locals 175 & 633 expressed the Union’s concerns with, and opposition to, the proposal.
  • The proposed change would have entailed a two-year trial. During the trial, retail businesses in Ontario would have been allowed to open on six of the nine public holidays. They would only be required to close on Good Friday, Canada Day, and Christmas.
  • Over recent years, UFCW Locals 175 & 633 have fought back against similar moves in municipalities including the Region of York, Peel, Niagara, Toronto and Windsor. Read more about that here.

Learn more about becoming a member of UFCW Locals 175 & 633!

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