The 15 employees are the second group of Tim Hortons workers to form a union with Workers United Canada Council. They join 35 Tim Hortons workers at a separate Tim Hortons restaurant in Winnipeg, who have been represented by Workers United since 2015.
“The workers voted to form a union because they see it as the best way to improve their working conditions,” said Rabia Syed, organizer with Workers United Canada Council. “Tim Hortons workers deserve fair wages, better scheduling, and they have the right to be respected at work.”
The workers cast their votes on June 23, however, the ballot box was sealed until the Manitoba Labour Board could make a ruling on the employer’s procedural challenge that the single franchise did not constitute an appropriate and viable bargaining unit. The board ruled in favor of the union on July 21 and asked the parties to return on July 26 for the ballots to be counted.
“It’s powerful to see foodservice workers supporting each other,” said Barry Fowlie, director of workers with the United Canada Council. “Tim Hortons franchisees have formed their own organization, the Great White North Franchisee Association, to protect their rights in their recent struggles with their parent company, and now Tim Hortons employees are forming a union so they can do the same. Workers can make real improvements by organizing together.”