Forty-five employees at New Haven Learning Centre in Toronto join UFCW Local 175
June 24, 2021
After a month-long organizing drive, employees at New Haven Learning Centre voted a resounding yes to becoming members of UFCW Local 175.
Members at New Haven Learning Centre work as Instructor Therapists to support children and adults with developmental disabilities. Through the use of their specialized skills, these Therapists aid clients in their learning and social development.
The workers voted 90% in favour of joining the Union in their landslide victory. They fought to unionize so they could work collectively toward addressing respect and dignity at work, job security, seniority rights, higher and more transparent wages, hassle-free paid sick days, and other working conditions.
Many employees have been feeling burned out as a result of a high turnover rate among staff and an inadequate work-life balance, including a lot of unpaid work. For example, employees often wait with a child whose parents are late for pick up, without compensation for that time. There is also a lot of prep work needed for classes that is not accounted for in wages either.
The majority of the workers at this location are women and recent graduates. The issues they face reflect the gender inequality in jobs, like teaching and social services, which are traditionally seen as “women’s work.” This work tends to be underpaid, and women are more likely to find themselves in precarious working conditions.
By joining the Union, these new members can use collective bargaining to make better gains going forward.
New Haven Learning Centre is located in Toronto and currently employs approximately 40 full-time and five part-time workers who will comprise the bargaining unit.
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