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Unifor condemns Retail Council of Canada’s attack on equal pay

September 28, 2018

TORONTO- Unifor calls for the defence of equal pay provisions that protect millions of part-time and temporary workers in Ontario. 

“Paying two workers dramatically different wages for performing the same job attacks the very core of fairness,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “The Retail Council of Canada shows a callous disrespect for retail workers by lobbying to re-instate this two-tiered treatment.”

The Employment Standards Act was recently amended to include clear language on pay equity for temporary, part-time and casual workers. Workers performing the same kind of work are entitled to the same rate of pay under current law.

“The government must listen to the overwhelming majority of Ontarians that support fairness for workers, not chip away at protection for the precariously employed at the request of employer groups that have a single goal - turn a higher profit,” said Naureen Rizvi, Unifor Ontario Regional Director.

Of the seven million people working in Ontario, 1.3 million currently work part-time and 750,000 are temporary. Unifor represents approximately 16,000 workers in the retail and wholesale sector in Ontario, including front-line clerks in stores across the province.

“Retail workers are being squeezed from all sides- with threats from the government to cut the $15 per hour minimum wage, and now this call to claw back equal pay for equal work,” said Gord Currie, President of Unifor Local 414, the union representing 12,000 members in workplaces including in the retail and service industry across the province. “The rights of our members are not up for debate. Everyone deserves a decent wage.”

For more information or to arrange interviews please contact Unifor National Communications Representative Sarah McCue at sarah.mccue@unifor.org or at 416-458-3307 (cell).