Today the collective agreement arbitration took a turn, and we’re hoping it’s a positive one. We started the day as usual. However, by noon, the arbitration panel announced it wanted to make a statement to the parties after the lunch break.

This afternoon, Ms. Cummings, the chair of the arbitration board recommended, in the strongest terms, that the parties turn to a mediator of the highest calibre to help them get to an agreement. Ms. Cummings told the parties that this was a case with a significant risk for both parties. She said that continuing to the end would be both lengthy and costly. She said that they should spend at least a weekend and some preparation time to make sure they gave mediation the best chance of success.
The parties were ordered to go and discuss the direction and to report back by the end of the day.
By 4:00, The Association told the arbitration board that it was prepared to agree to the mediation. We were pleased that the City reacted positively to the direction as well. We still have to work out details, including choosing the mediator and scheduling dates, but we are hopeful they will be held by mid-June.

This has been a long and, in many ways, painful process for all concerned. We now have a clear direction from the arbitration panel that the City and the Association should make best efforts, with the guidance of a mediator, to settle their differences.


Jason Timlick
LPFFA, local 142