20 April 2016
The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation issued a statement on April 19, 2016 (attached below), seriously misleading the wage rate proposal advanced by locked out workers at the Rideau Carleton Slots.
In its statement, OLG claims that the “union demanded almost 20% in increases over 5 years.” This is a ludicrous statement and completely false.
The last offer proposed by the workers, and which was rejected by OLG, includes the following wage rate increases:
Year 1: 1.75%
Year 2: 0%
Year 3: 0%
Year 4: 2%
Year 5: 3%
This adds up to 6.75% over five years. Moreover, if these wage rate increases are applied to payroll to account for the workers’ varying rates of pay, OLG’s total payroll costs would only rise by 3.19% over five years.
Note that the locked out workers have not received a raise since 2009, and that the cost of living in Ottawa since then has increased by over 10%, which means that their wages have decreased substantially in real terms. Keeping this context in mind, the workers also proposed a one-time, non-pensionable, $5,000 lump sum payment on year 3 to account for this situation.
If this lump sum is also factored into payroll calculations, OLG’s total payroll cost would rise by 5.91% over five years.
“OLG’s attempt to so brazenly mislead the public about the workers’ proposal at the bargaining table is shocking and very unproductive,” said Larry Rousseau, Regional Executive Vice President for PSAC in the National Capital Region. “I don’t know why they would try to spread such falsities.”
“We call on OLG to return to the table with a willingness to negotiate a fair deal,” added Doug Marshall, President of the Union of National Employees, a component of PSAC. “Our wage rate proposals are quite reasonable given the rise in the cost of living.”