As of this writing, an agreement has not yet been reached with the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE). The union, which represents over 55,000 workers across Ontario, has been negotiating with the provincial government for months in an effort to secure a new contract.
The negotiations have been fraught with tension, with both sides accusing the other of being unreasonable and unwilling to compromise. The main sticking point in the negotiations has been job security, with the union pushing for assurances that its members will not be laid off or have their positions contracted out.
The government, for its part, has been insisting that any new contract must be fiscally responsible and help rein in the province`s ballooning deficit. To that end, it has proposed a wage freeze for CUPE members, which the union has rejected.
Despite the lack of progress in the negotiations, both sides have expressed a willingness to continue talking. In fact, they recently agreed to enter into mediation, which is a process in which a neutral third party helps facilitate discussions between the two sides.
It remains to be seen whether mediation will be successful in bringing about a resolution to the dispute. If a deal is not reached soon, CUPE members could be in a legal strike position, which would disrupt services across the province.
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