UFCW Local 175 President Shawn Haggerty

Shawn Haggerty

President, Local 175 UFCW Canada

Winter 2020: Resiliency, compassion, and the continued fight to protect working people

This past year has tested all of us in many ways; especially what we’re willing to sacrifice for our jobs versus our well-being. Our priorities, our expectations, and our fears have all been put into clearer view.

Your Union continues to push for solutions for pandemic pay and helping workers achieve permanent improvements.

This year, the UFCW Canada Ontario Provincial Council (OPC) submission to the province regarding the Ontario budget included a number of ways the government could do better to protect working people. You can read the Union’s full budget submission at

Among the proposals we made was legislating 10 paid sick days per year, which is an important step needed to protect the income and health of all working people. Ten paid sick days for all workers would mean not having to make the choice between staying home ill or earning a paycheque.

But no such thing was included in the budget, which the government released on November 5, 2020.

Additionally, the budget made no mention of substantial minimum wage increases; no provincially mandated pandemic pay; no permanent improvements to wages in healthcare.

The only item from our submission that the government addressed was providing a four-hour minimum of care for clients in long-term care homes.
But, the timeline put forth? Several years. The budget for it? Not clear.

The NDP has twice put forth Bills to improve minimum standards for long-term care. MPP France Gélinas (NDP, Nickel Belt) first introduced legislation in April 2016, and again in 2017 after the prorogation of parliament. The latest, Bill 13, was put forth as a Private Member’s bill by MPP Teresa Armstrong (NDP, London Fanshawe). Bill 13 just passed its second reading on October 29 – almost two and a half years after its first reading.

Our healthcare workers need immediate help.

Immediate doesn’t mean three or four years down the road.

We didn’t need another commission to tell us what has been clear for a long time: Ontario’s long-term care system is in trouble. Patients and workers have been bearing the brunt of it all for years while the owners continue to rake in profits.

We can applaud the $3 per hour increase for Personal Support Workers (PSWs) but that celebration – much like the increase – is temporary. Making the increase temporary reminds those workers that the government only cares when the government’s reputation is on the line. And having the increase apply to only some healthcare workers is a slap in the face to the rest of the industry, too.

Visit this link to add your voice to the call for permanent substantial improvements to the entire healthcare industry. It takes less than a minute to use our auto-emailer to reach out to your MPP, no matter which party they belong to, and let them know that you want our healthcare system funded properly and immediately.

This year has demonstrated, without doubt, that many employers, particularly the millionaire or billionaire-level CEOs, won't hesitate to sacrifice workers in order to secure their own continued status and income.

But this year has also shown that it’s not the government holding our economy and society together with press conferences or commercials patting themselves on the shoulder.

It’s not the employers who talk about the ‘heroes’ that work for them while at the same time eliminating pandemic pay and pocketing record profits.

It’s you – our members – who keep us all moving forward day by day.

You face rude belligerent customers. You face crowded productions lines and work spaces wearing restrictive PPE amidst physical barriers and new protocols. You hold the hands of those who are dying whose loved ones are unable or not allowed to visit them.

You feel the call to keep working even under the most difficult of circumstances because you know your jobs are vital – and I thank you for that.

And while I know you don’t hear it every day, I know I’m not alone in thanking you for that.

So, as we enter the holiday season, know that your communities are thankful for the work you do and your dedication to keeping them safe, fed, and cared for. I hope you can all find a way to celebrate and spend time with your families and loved ones in the safest way possible. Take care and be safe.

In Solidarity,

Shawn Haggerty
President, Local 175 UFCW Canada

UFCW Local 175 Secretary-Treasurer Kelly Tosato

Kelly Tosato

Secretary-Treasurer, Local 175 UFCW Canada

Winter 2020: Health & Safety in the workplace during COVID-19

Health and safety concerns continue to be the most pressing issue for our members right now.

Navigating the ever-changing, confusing, and sometimes conflicting information put forth by government, health officials, and employers can be frustrating. Your employer should be abiding by any and all regulations for personal protective equipment (PPE) and other health and safety measures such as cleaning, maximum number of customers or people in an indoor space, and more.

Above all else, you should be as confident as possible at work with the PPE you, your co-workers, and visitors or customers are wearing.

Please speak up if you have any concerns. You can talk to your workplace Health & Safety Reps, your Union Stewards, or your Union Representative.

Members continue to wonder why employers haven’t reinstated (or in many cases, paid any) pandemic premiums. It’s infuriating to see a number of these employers continue to report record profits and increased shareholder dividends while refusing to pay the true “heroes” anything more than they have to.
At the end of October, the Union sent open letters to the federal and provincial governments demanding they step in to do their part and fight for the constituents who elected them – the very people continuing to work day in and day out through this pandemic.

Among other things, we asked for both branches of the government to increase minimum wage, legislate pandemic pay, and to improve funding for healthcare and make long-term care part of the public healthcare system. In addition, and similar to the UFCW’s submission on the provincial budget, the letter to Premier Ford included the need for 10 paid sick days per year for all workers. Find the full content of the letters at

When it comes to working through this pandemic, if you believe you’ve contracted COVID-19 through work you should file a WSIB Claim.

The Ontario Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) reports that as of November 20, 2020, the number of allowed claims related to COVID-19 was 6,596. It’s important to file the Form 6 for a WSIB claim if you contract COVID-19 at work. Given the long-lasting side effects that some patients with the virus experience, it’s very important to make sure you get your WSIB claim in if your positive COVID-19 test is a result of work.

The WSIB has also received more than 3,800 exposure forms. That form, called a Program for Exposure Incident Reporting (PEIR) form, is something workers should fill out to report a known exposure to the virus at work. You don’t need to have symptoms or a positive test result. The PEIR is about establishing timelines and may become extremely important for any future claims.

Read more about COVID-19 exposure in the workplace at this link where you'll find an article we published earlier this year. As always, if you have questions you can speak to you Union Representative.

For the next little while, all in-person courses, conferences, and seminars will continue to be postponed. We are conducting in-person meetings such as ratifications and grievances when necessary and where municipalities allow such meetings. As you can see on our cover and on page 13 of the Winter 2020 issue of Checkout (or here), some creativity is needed to conduct large meetings like the ratification vote for Cargill Dunlop that took place at a drive-in.

I know we all hope to get back to some version of normal life next year – the sooner, the better. And I know that some things will forever be changed. But throughout the holidays and beyond, I hope we can all continue to find the compassion and empathy necessary to rely on each other and weather this storm.
Take care of each other and enjoy a safe and happy holiday season.

In Solidarity,

Kelly Tosato
Secretary-Treasurer, UFCW Local 175


Local 175

Shawn Haggerty – President
Kelly Tosato – Secretary-Treasurer
Karen Vaughan – Recorder


Rick Alagierski, Glen Avila, Lucy Bedore, Chris Bernardi, Maggie Brayson, Lorne Bruce, Paul Capranos, Michael Collins, Al Couture, Kelly Dick, Michelle Dow, Ozren Elezovic, Ross Fraser, Lynne Grant, Rob Hamilton, Dawn Hanlon, Shirley Hepditch, Jennifer Hoskins, Kimberly Hunter, Scott Jackson, Sharon Jones, Agron Klecka, Kelly Kobitz, Carolyn Levesque, Murray Macrae, Jose Marteniano, Julia Mcaninch, Sharon McMahon, Cheryl Miner, Jim Montgomery, Tony Morello, Jean Patenaude, Jamesantony Pathmarajah, Toni Pettitt, Alan Reston, Louis Rocha, Terry Rombough, Joy Searles, Linda Souliere, Leighton Stephenson, Rick Szyja, Navidad Talbot, Jonathan Van Egmond, Lori Wallis, Byron Williams, Michael Windley.

Local 633

Marylou Mallett – President
Brian Kozlowski – Secretary-Treasurer
Julie MacCrae – Recorder


Dennis Gagnon, Dale Stuart, Rita-Lynn Swiderski.


Officers of Local 175

Shawn Haggerty – President
Kelly Tosato – Secretary-Treasurer
Karen Vaughan – Recorder
Rob Armbruster – Executive Assistant to the President
Sylvia Groom – Executive Assistant to the President
Jim McLean – Executive Assistant to the President


Officers of Local 633

Marylou Mallett – President
Brian Kozlowski – Secretary-Treasurer
Julie MacCrae – Recorder

Region 1

(Thunder Bay Office)
807-346-4227 – 1-800-465-6932 – fax 807-346-4055
Director – Sandra Rogerson
Union Representatives – Alex Stubbs, Tracy Stubbs

Region 2

(Mississauga Office)
905-821-8329 – 1-800-565-8329 – fax 905-821-7144
Director – Angela Mattioli
Union Representatives – Farman Ali, Rick Daudlin, Casey Magee, Christina Mayberry, Tony Nigro, Sabrina Qadir, and Meemee Seto; Servicing Representative – Sacha Edey

Region 3

(Ottawa & Cornwall Offices)
613-725-2154 – 1-800-267-5295 – fax 613-725-2328
Director – Daniel Mercier
Union Representatives – Shannon Epp, Paul Hardwick, Kimberly Hunter, Dean McLaren, Joe Tenn; Servicing Representative – Sandra Proulx

Region 4

(Mississauga Office)
905-821-8329 – 1-800-565-8329 – fax 905-821-7144
Director – John Di Nardo
Union Representative - Tim Kelly; Servicing Representatives – Colleen Cox, Virginia Haggith, Jennifer Hanley, Nabeela Irfan, Arlene Robertson, Chris Watson.

Region 5

(Cambridge & Leamington Offices)
Cambridge: 519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Leamington: 519-326-6751 – 1-888-558-5114 – fax 519-326-0597

Director – Jehan Ahamed
Union Representatives – Joce Cote, Mario Tardelli, Ashleigh Vink
Servicing Representatives – Rolando Cabral

Region 6

(Hamilton Office)
905-545-8354 – 1-800-567-2125 – fax 905-545-8355
Director – Rob Nicholas
Union Representatives – Sam Caetano, Dave Forbes, Jason Hanley, Lee Johnson-Koehn, Mike Mattioli, Brad Morrison, Melody Slattery, Fred Teeple.

Region 7

(Cambridge Office)
519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Director – Chris Fuller
Union Representatives – Diane Sanvido, Steve Springall, Navidad Talbot
Servicing Representatives – Dan Bondy, Todd Janes

Region 8

(Sudbury Office)
705-674-0768 – 1-800-465-1722 – fax 705-674-6815
Director – Derik McArthur
Union Representatives – Jeff Barry, John Beaton, Richard Eberhardt, Jim Hames, Derek Jokhu

Workers’ Compensation Department
519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Sharon Kempf – Director
Joanne Ford, Phil Hames, Sarah Neath, Courtney Salomons – Workers’ Compensation Representatives; Georgina MacDonald – Intake Representative

Health & Safety
519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Sharon Kempf – Director
Mary Shaw – Health & Safety Representatives

Legal Department

Jane Mulkewich – Director
Shauna Fabrizi, Mary Hurley, Matthew Jagodits, Silvia Neagu, Kendall Yamagishi – Legal Counsel

Organizing Department
1-800-565-8329 / 905-821-8329
Rick Wauhkonen – Director
Ricardo Bocanegra, Tim Hum, Jeffery Lu, Lionel MacEachern, Amy Tran – Organizing Representatives; Ayesha Jabbar – Organizing Apprentice

Communications Department
1-800-565-8329 / 905-821-8329
Jennifer Tunney – Senior Communications Representative
Laurie Duncan – Communications Representative

Training & Education call 1-800-267-1977
Rob Armbruster – Director
Kelly Nicholas – Co-ordinator
Teresa Wilson – Servicing Representative
Tim Deelstra – Engagement & Media Relations Strategist

Pay Equity

Sharon Kempf – Director
Orsola Augurusa, Matt Davenport, Union Representatives