Toronto Zoo management are on the fast track to lockout staff, according to CUPE Local 1600 president Christine McKenzie.
In a statement released Monday, McKenzie said union negotiators were told on Apr. 4 that management intended to seek a no-board report from the Ministry of Labour. Once the no-board is issued either party can trigger a work stoppage 17 days later.
McKenzie called the move troubling and put into question the effects a lockout would have on the upcoming panda exhibit.
“The Zoo appears to be putting the entire spring season at risk, including the upcoming panda display by putting us on a fast track to a lockout,” she said. “It is mystifying because, throughout the bargaining process, management has steadfastly refused to engage in anything resembling meaningful bargaining.”
Last month union members voted unanimously in favour of a strike.
CUPE Local 1600 represents horticulturalists, maintenance staff, zookeepers, veterinary technicians, and many other zoo staff,