LGA Members Vote in Favour of Strike Mandate
Jun 09, 2015
Today, MGEU members from the Manitoba Liquor and Gaming Authority (LGA), Local 425 and 426, voted 92% in favour of possible strike action in the ongoing negotiation toward a new contract.
Employees at the Manitoba Liquor and Gaming Authority were told by their employer that no one would lose anything as a result of the recent merger, but it became clear to the LGA Bargaining Committee that wasn’t true, and as a result they asked the members to come out and take a strike vote.
“Without getting into specifics that would constitute bargaining in the media, the LGA is looking to roll back health benefits for these employees, while putting a substandard wage proposal on the table. The members have been exceedingly patient with the employer as the merger has been proceeding, and have lent their knowledge and expertise to ensuring it went well. Now they’ve reached the limit of what they’re willing to accept and knew they had only one choice moving forward: give their bargaining committee a strong strike mandate,” said MGEU President Michelle Gawronsky.
A strike mandate does not always mean a strike will follow; it means authority is given to the bargaining committee to establish a strike date if no agreement is reached on a new contract in a reasonable time frame.
The LGA Bargaining Committee’s main priority is to remain at the bargaining table until a fair agreement can be bargained in earnest.
Any further updates on these negotiations will be posted here.
What do these workers do?
Provide liquor licenses to both bars and restaurants as well as casual licenses for things like wedding socials and fundraisers. They enforce liquor laws of the province at establishments but also in the community when functions take place where liquor is sold. In addition, they provide gaming licenses for events like raffles and fundraisers. They enforce fair gaming, which involves things such as investigating complaints about gaming operations and ensuring the integrity of lotteries and raffles in Manitoba.
What happens if they strike? What’s at stake?
Safety is a big part of what this department oversees. So if a liquor inspector isn’t in the community where alcohol is served, no one is checking for over-serving, capacity issues, or serving alcohol to minors.
Manitobans will also want the assurance that if a liquor license is being sought, for example, that it is being processed by someone with experience to know if there is an issue or concern that may affect safety.
Those people looking to host a social or wedding, or sponsor a raffle, contest, or lottery would be affected because the applications for these things would not be processed. In addition, no one wants a delay if a day care or child care centre wants a license to fund raise for new equipment or a new play structure, but this too could be affected.