CONSTRUCTION UNIONS SIGN MUTUAL CO-OPERATION AGREEMENT
OAKVILLE — Local 793 of the International Union of Operating Engineers and Labourers’ International Union of North America, Local 183 have signed a wide-ranging and historic agreement that paves the way for greater co-operation on a number of issues between the labour organizations.
The 2017 Mutual Co-operation Agreement was signed at a ceremony in Toronto on Jan. 27, 2017 by Local 793 business manager Mike Gallagher and Local 183 business manager Jack Oliveira. The agreement will run until Nov. 30, 2018, but can be extended at the discretion of the business managers.
Local 183 and Local 793 have had a long and co-operative relationship. Both unions are members of the Ontario Formwork Council, and have other collective agreements in common. “Over the past few years we have been fighting each other rather than working collaboratively,” states business manager Oliveira. “I am happy that we were able to put that behind us, and that we are moving forward to level the playing field. This level of co-operation will be good for our members, and for members of Local 793.”
The two unions have agreed to greater co-operation in the sewer and watermain, roads and heavy engineering sectors, as well as utilities work, in the Greater Toronto area, parts of South Central Ontario and parts of Eastern Ontario. The unions have commited to assist each other in organizing and collective agreement enforcement. The deal also provides a framework for resolving outstanding jurisdictional disputes, and moving forward with greater solidarity.
“I am pleased that we have signed this agreement and confirmed the friendship that we have enjoyed for more than 50 years,” said business manager Gallagher of Local 793. “My father was the founding member, and the first business manager of Local 183. He would be proud that the two unions are working together on issues important to our members and concentrating our resources on bringing the benefits of unionization to unrepresented workers rather than spending resources fighting each other at the Labour Relations Board.”
Local 793 of the International Union of Operating Engineers represents nearly 15,000 highly-skilled crane and heavy equipment operators across Ontario. The union has a head office, banquet hall and training campus in Oakville, and another training campus in Morrisburg.
Local 183, one of 11 LiUNA Local Unions in Ontario, is the largest construction local in North America with more than 50,000 members. It has both offices and training centres in Toronto, Barrie, Kingston and Cobourg (with a new facility forthcoming in Cambridge). The union represents workers in all aspects of the construction industry, including residential, sewer and watermain, bridge building, road construction, pipelines, railroads and the utilities sector. The local also represents healthcare, sanitation, and industrial workers across the GTA.