1. Are Negotiations Continuing?
As of today, June 16, yes. Both sides continue to negotiate in an effort to achieve a collective agreement.
Negotiations usually continue even after a strike vote.
2. What is Conciliation?
Conciliation is the process in which a conciliation officer, appointed by the Ontario Ministry of Labour, acts as a mediator between the opposing parties in order to facilitate communication and reach a settlement. At any point during negotiations, either party may ask for third-party assistance to reach an agreement. In our case, the Employer applied for conciliation immediately after the June 7 negotiating session. The process is non-binding, but provincial law requires at least one meeting with a Conciliator before a lockout or a strike can occur. Although the role of the Conciliator is to confer with the parties and endeavour to reach an agreement, he or she has no authority to impose a settlement. It is not the job of the Conciliator to make judgments on the merits and positions of each side; he or she may make suggestions to either or both sides, but these suggestions are not binding and the parties are free to accept or ignore them.