Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Toronto city strikers

Continued from here.

You know you read in the news about all the Toronto city workers going on strike and their union making all these demands and it's easy enough to paint all the city workers with one brush. What colour that brush is of course depends where on the economic policy spectrum one likes to plant oneself. That loaded socio-economic discussion is beyond the scope of this blog but I was talking to someone yesterday from TAS who was walking the picket line at "the dump" and he was telling me about the situation on the ground. It's not as monochromatic as people may think.

Apparently, walking the pickets is not compulsory but if you don't, you won't get paid your ten bucks an hour or something like that from the union. So, if you're savings are non-existent because, say, you've just spent your last cent on getting another dog rescued from some high kill pound somewhere, then it's either picket or find another job. For those working at TAS who are more flexible in the monetary department, some of them have chosen not to support the strike (by not picketing) because of its impact on the animals, not just the animals in the facilities at the moment but also the ones which aren't being rescued because the South Shelter is closed.

That's something that the union heads might want to take note of. If they want to get the public onside, and right now, I think they need as much help in that regard as they can get, they might not want to implicate themselves with cute puppies and kittens rotting away somewhere because of their strike action. If not now, then next time, and I'm sure there will be a next time, they might consider letting at least an essential crew of TAS staff stay on the job so that animals don't end up suffering.

For most of us, the city strike is a matter of inconvenience. For the animals, especially the ones not being rescued, it can be a matter of life and death.

As a side note, I just want to give a huge thanks to all the readers here who contacted me, or TAS South directly, volunteering to foster dogs and cats for the duration of the strike. Your generous offers are sincerely appreciated and if you don't already have a new temporary family member, there's a chance you might get a call in the coming days if the strike goes on longer than expected. Thanks again so much.


Anonymous said...

Woah Fred The Toronto Star totally mentions your blog in the article about the strike and TAS, thats so awsome. Congrats on that


Fred said...

That's pretty cool. I'll have to go check it out.

Anonymous said...

Fred, now that the deal is up for ratification, any news on when TAS staff will be back at work and, more importantly, how are the animals and what was the strike's impact?

Fred said...

ASAP, at least that's what they want but the vote's on Wednesday so it be a few days yet.

There's a few question wrt animals which will be asked once everyone's back at work. Right now, getting a hold of anyone is near impossible.