Toronto Public Library Workers Union

Who We Are

The Toronto Public Library Workers Union represents about 2300 full and part-time library workers across the city in 98 branches as well as in administrative and technical support services.

Our Roots

Our roots as a union go back nearly one hundred years to the early days of the 20th century, when Toronto Civic workers began organizing. We are affiliated with the Canadian Union of Public Employees as Local 4948.

Our Members

TPL staff serve the world's busiest library system, with 18.5 million visits a year. Our members are highly educated and dedicated professionals who reflect the diversity of our city and who devote their careers to preserving, organizing, enhancing and making more accessible the vast reservoir of human knowledge found in our libraries. Collectively, they are one of Toronto's most valuable public resources.

Jinkie Pinpoint  DSC1158R01
Jinkie David
Jinkie began working at TPL in 1997 as a student and when she completed her university degree she stayed on "because of the great opportunities, the great staff and the great public we work with." She is now a full-time Administrative Support Assistant in Room Bookings. Jinkie was around during amalgamation and says the decrease in staff since then is very noticeable. Although the larger system allowed for more opportunities, she finds that the resources and time you are given to achieve your job have declined, making it not only stressful but impairing her ability to help library users. "You're less engaged with patrons and the library experience suffers. It's not as much of a service as it once was." Nevertheless, she carries on and does her best every day, knowing how vital the library is to so many people. 
Joanna Pinpoint  DSC1083R01
Joanna Cristini

Joanna began working at TPL in 1985 and is a full-time Public Service Assistant. Even after all these years, she continues to love working "in a learning environment" and enjoys "the opportunity to work with other great staff, to help people on a daily basis and to meet new people." She deals with over 200 people a day. The self-checkout machines are not as helpful as had been hoped, Joanna says. "You miss speaking with at least half the number of regular patrons that we used to interact with unless there is a problem with the equipment or their card."

She also finds the security alarm often goes off when people try to self-checkout. They end up having to come back to the staff. 

 

Ryan Pinpoint  DSC0991R01Ryan Saavedra

Since 2009, Ryan has been a full-time librarian who works with children. He was first hired by TPL in 1999. He went to work for TPL in his teens because "it is a great job for high school kids and book lovers." He wanted to become a librarian because he enjoys helping people succeed and improve themselves. He feels that a librarian can play a role in this. "I've seen how much help the library can be to families, communities, newcomers, kids and all sorts of people." Ryan interacts with at least 100 patrons per day. His least favourite things about the TPL are the bureaucracy that stalls new initiatives and the fact that it is a large organization where you'll never meet everyone in every branch.  

 

Eliseo Pinpoint  DSC1480R01Eliseo Zompanti

Eliseo, Branch Head of Rexdale Library, was born in Italy. He immigrated to Canada when he was four years old and has lived in Toronto since, growing up in the Rogers/Weston Road area. In 1980, Eliseo applied for a part-time position as a Page at the York Public Library System, which became part of the TPL after Toronto amalgamation in 1998. In the beginning, working at the library, "…wasn't anything I ever thought I'd stick with," says Eliseo. Despite this, he kept his job all throughout high school and college where he earned a diploma in classical animation from Sheridan College, eventually working his way up to a full-time position.

Eliseo's favourite part about working at TPL is the interaction with people, especially with children who love reading. 

 

Fitz Pinpoint  DSC0940R01
Fitzgerald Steele

Fitzgerald is a full-time Shipper and Driver who has worked for TPL since 1991. When he was first hired, it was just as a job, but he has grown to love his work and the contribution the libraries make to the community. "I enjoy working with the diversity of people at TPL. The quality of service they provide to the public is outstanding. I see it every day," he says. Fitzgerald typically deals with 100 people from the public daily. Since amalgamation he has seen a noticeable decline in the number of staff, which puts a lot of pressure on those who are there to serve the public. "They do a great job but there aren't enough of them. We need more people." Fitzgerald's favourite books are all of the A.K. Lewis series. 

 

Kathleen Pinpoint  DSC1044R01Kathleen Tong

Kathleen is a part-time Answerline Assistant at the Toronto Reference Library. She was hired in 1995. She wanted to work at TPL because she loved the book collections available in one of the world's great library systems. Kathleen's favourite things about working at TPL is the variety of jobs available, working with various groups of people and serving the public. She works with many people every day over the telephone and through the email and chat service.

Her least favourite thing is not being able to help or solve problems for customers. "In any large organization, changes, improvements and solutions often take a very long time to be implemented," she says. "It's no different here." 

 
Stephanie Pinpoint  DSC1335R01Stephanie Pagnello

Stephanie has worked part-time as a Public Service Assistant since she began at TPL in 2005. On an average day, she assists 200-300 patrons and enjoys making the library more accessible and useful to users. Her B.A. in Psychology and Certificate in Behavioural Science have helped equip her for interacting with a very wide range of library users and their needs. Like many other part-time library workers, Stephanie hopes to eventually get a full-time position at TPL so that she can settle on library work as a career and put her training and experience to even better use. But staff reductions mean that full-time jobs are few and far between. Indeed, there are fewer full-time positions at TPL today than when she started six years ago, despite steadily growing library use in Toronto. 

 

Librarian Glasses

Members Login Here:

Twitter icon

Recent Tweets

Oct 13
RT @progresstoronto: In just 3 days over 2,000 people have already sent their message to Ford to demand he stop his cuts to child care! We…
Oct 11
#LibraryWorkers deliver high quality services + are dedicated to their work but face challenges: cuts to services/p… https://t.co/KMVXRNmogr
Oct 10
RT @CUPE391Pres: Yes! Everyone - get a library card, visit a library in your community, find out about and use the services our members pro…
Oct 10
RT @kmsw3: Cupe 5047 loves their school Librarians!! https://t.co/c1RCquJIk4
Oct 10
RT @CUPE391: Standing up against #precariouswork at #cupe2019 because creating more precarious jobs does not a #livingwage make ... thank…
Oct 10
#LibraryWorkers are celebrating #CanadianLibraryMonth Shoutout to all #CUPE #LibraryWarriors who proudly serve thei… https://t.co/edE6qxB9Hx
Oct 10
RT @ElemTeachersTO: TOMORROW, on October 10, join more than 700+ schools across Ontario in a Province-Wide WALK-IN. Join parents and sho…
Oct 09
RT @CUPEOntario: CUPE Ontario President @FredHahnCUPE is re-elected as General Vice President - Ontario for the CUPE National Executive Bo…
Oct 09
RT @progresstoronto: BREAKING: A new city report shows that Premier Doug Ford is cutting $15 million to Toronto child care as of Jan 1 (& e…
Oct 09
Staffless Libraries: A Bad Idea. Reason 29 (Disruptive Behaviour @torontolibrary should be a safe and welcoming p… https://t.co/GRi4SjSxIh
Oct 08
RT @torontolabour: The Ford government needs to protect temporary workers #Conservatives #BloodOnTheirHands https://t.co/CzViW4gB7g via @to
Oct 08
RT @cupenat: BIG NEWS! CUPE is the largest and strongest union this country has ever seen with 700,000 members nationwide #CUPE2019 https…
Oct 07
RT @wylie_alan: On #librariesweek let’s remember all the library staff working under severe pressure due to cuts, our colleagues who’ve los…
Oct 07
RT @osbcucscso: We are pleased to report that we have a tentative agreement with the Council of Trustees' Associations and the province of…
Oct 07
RT @CUPEOntario: Congratulations to CUPE Ontario’s School Board Council of Unions(@osbcucscso) for negotiating a tentative collective agre…
Oct 07
RT @CUPE391Pres#CUPE2019 National Convention Library Sector meeting #librarywarriors #solidarity #canadianlibrarymonth https://t.co/kOUU6
Oct 07
Ontario education workers reach deal with province, averting Monday school strike | CBC News https://t.co/EEgAsSzyqc
Oct 06
RT @osbcucscso: Bargaining team remains at the table committed to reaching a fair deal for students, families and our members.
Oct 05
RT @JILLSLASTWORD: In another attack on Culture @TheatreOntario - a theatrical landmark for almost half a century - is being forced to shu…
Oct 05
RT @osbcucscso: While our negotiations team was bunkered down trying to achieve services for students @Sflecce is out at an event #thedis
Oct 04
RT @cupe932 @bengymen Kudos to @Local4948
Oct 04
A Fair Canada for Everyone #vote #canadianlabour #canlab #Fairnessworks Text FAIR to 343-800-1413 Take action at… https://t.co/bopVI4sNPr
Oct 03
Staffless Libraries: A Bad Idea. Reason 34 (Children Left Unattended) This happens all the time in staffed librari… https://t.co/VcbJxHlAB0
Oct 03
Staffless Libraries: A Bad Idea. Reason 8 (No Assistance In Emergencies @torontolibrary gets 17 million+ visits e… https://t.co/gWVlhSWwaK
Oct 03
RT @Local4948: Mayor @JohnTory ’s proclamation of today as “I’m Library People Day” is clouded by his support for Staffless Libraries, a pr…
Oct 03
Mayor @JohnTory ’s proclamation of today as “I’m Library People Day” is clouded by his support for Staffless Librar… https://t.co/iVu5bNaRoE
Oct 03
RT @cupenat: With school boards using education workers’ work-to-rule job action as an excuse to cut programs, services, and staffing in sc…
Oct 03
RT @torontolabour: Rally at #FieraFoods factory where the fifth temp agency worker was killed last week. Why has no CEO been jailed #FordN
Oct 03
RT @stephvanstralen: CUPE Education Workers have officially given notice they will take strike action on Monday, October 7 if no deal is re…
Oct 03
RT @CUPEOntario: With school boards using education workers’ work-to-rule job action as an excuse to cut programs, services, and staffing i…
Oct 01
RT @progresstoronto: This week City Council votes on taking Doug Ford to the Supreme Court of Canada. Encourage your Councillor and the May…
Oct 01
RT @CUPEOntario: Today, more than 55,000 CUPE education workers have begun legal job action to secure the services students need at school.…
Oct 01
RT @Shelly__Gordon: For bad bosses like Fiera Foods, temp agency workers' lives are cheap. This. Ends. Now. SIGN THE PETITION! Premier @Fo
Sep 30
RT @cupenat: Don't forget to wear an orange shirt today to honour residential school survivors #OrangeShirtDay https://t.co/cLq8DdEuxX htt…
Sep 29
RT @cupenat#CanadianLibraryMonth is right around the corner! Library workers bring your library to life. Show your appreciation all Octob…
Sep 28
RT @CUPE391: Yes! Sufficient funding of libraries affects the workers, the collections, and ultimately the services we can provide to our p…
Sep 27
RT @torontolabour: Views from Toronto's climate strike — sights, sounds and signs from the massive event | CBC News https://t.co/rwUIZi4WcX
Sep 27
#LibraryWarriors at Queen’s Park #climatestrikeTO to demand #ClimateAction now! There are no jobs on a dead planet.… https://t.co/ykQmz9wAZL
Sep 27
Staffless Libraries: A Bad Idea Reason 12 - No Programs 950,000+ patrons attend the 42,000+ programs… https://t.co/tmXWihi6Fm
Sep 27
RT @torontolabour: Join us today at Queen's Park 11 am to raise your voice for #climateaction There are no jobs on a dead planet - but we c…
Sep 27
RT @progresstoronto: Tomorrow, thousands of people will be marching for climate justice and we'll be there! Join us - look for Progress Tor…
Sep 27
RT @torontolabour: Another senseless worker death at Fiera Foods - this is the fifth one. Our hearts go out to the family and friends of th…
Sep 26
RT @Local4948#LibraryWorkers support school board workers @CUPE4400 @CUPEOntario @torontolabour @TPLWU4948Pres @4948Warriors#onpoli #So
Sep 26
Tell Ford: No Cuts to Schools — Progress Toronto@4948Warriors⁩ Please sign + forward@torontolabour⁩ ⁦… https://t.co/Xg9ZqCFw3F
Sep 24
RT @CUPEOntario: The Indigenous Council and Racial Justice Committee supporting #CommunitiesNotCuts 🏾🏽🏼 https://t.co/3TGIvHNyLm