Cross-campus layoffs and casualization won’t benefit Queen’s students or anyone else in Kingston warns CUPE 229

As Queen’s University announced further layoffs, the union representing maintenance staff on campus warned that quality of life will deteriorate for students and staff, while the broader community suffers.

“We were shocked last week to learn Queen’s will eliminate further custodial staff. That’s in addition to technical employees from our sister CUPE Local on campus who had already been laid off,” said Pat Cummings, President of Local 229 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE 229), which represents maintenance, cleaning and food service workers at Queen’s.

“We also know other union members on campus who are facing the same thing, while at the same time as they are eliminating skilled workers and decent jobs, Queen’s is advertising for new ‘casual’ employees. This ongoing, system-wide casualization, privatization and contracting out of decent jobs that help support our community simply isn’t sustainable,” he added.

Members were updated last week at a special meeting, where they voted overwhelmingly to support a campaign to highlight the negative impact on campus life and on the community posed eliminating good jobs and replacing them with precarious and casualized jobs that can’t support families and communities.

“Our members came out in record numbers and spoke very clearly—these cuts will harm the quality of life on campus and they will harm our community, and our members refuse to be silent while Queen’s Administration further degrades our campus and community through poorly-thought out job eliminations,” said Cummings.

For more information, please contact:

Pat Cummings, CUPE 229 President, 613-329-0135

Kevin Wilson, CUPE Communications, 416-821-6641