Toronto Public Library Workers Union

Many people associate unions exclusively with industrial or construction trades workers or those in manual labour occupations with low education requirements. But in Canada and elsewhere in the world, highly educated professional workers, especially those who work in the public sector, often belong to unions.

Equal Treatment

While their workplaces are generally safer than those in industry, construction or manual labour occupations, their needs for fair treatment are the same.

lib2.0Library workers are dedicated to their profession. The years of post-secondary training it requires to become a professional Librarian with a Master's degree are costly and not easily transferable to another occupation. Librarians have made a significant investment in their careers akin to an investment in a house. Belonging to a union is a type of insurance that their investment will be protected against arbitrary treatment and that they will have input into their compensation and working conditions. Many are willing to work part-time while waiting for a full-time position to open up. The years they spend working part-time should count towards their right to full-time work when it becomes available. Only a union can help ensure this.

Other classifications of library workers, such as Public Service Assistants, are in the same position as Librarians. They must be highly educated and typically have to work part-time for years before a full-time position opens up for them. Another classification - Pages - constitutes the single largest group of Toronto library workers. There are currently about 600 Toronto Public Library Pages. All work part-time and most are paid close to the Ontario Minimum Wage.

Since Toronto amalgamation in 1998, the public library workforce has decreased by ten percent while circulation has gone up by 25 per cent. This is a very large productivity increase, per worker.

All the evidence is that the library workers' union has contributed to the maintenance of an experienced, stable and dedicated workforce by ensuring fairness and security and promoting professional development. There has never been a strike in the Toronto Public Library. 

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RT @OPSEU: Passage of #Bill148 is a clear sign that "when working people get together and say what they need, they have the power to get it…
Nov 22
#Bill148 is now law! https://t.co/akUXjwcMHx Congrats to #librarywarriors trade unions, and community activists who… https://t.co/cmOiu3VLWS
Nov 22
RT @rabbleca: Does this math make sense to you? In the past 11 years, Ontario full-time faculty have been growing at half the speed as full…
Nov 22
RT @Raffi_RC: capitalism’s inequalities. who gains? who loses #minimumwage #LivingWage #makingendsmeet #equity https://t.co/hCS0LwDVgm
Nov 22
RT @Lindainred: Time to care with Jagmeet Singh NDPLeader @CUPEOntario https://t.co/pExKJndJM0
Nov 22
RT @m_layton: Read this thread if you care about TO services and our long term financial well-being. Another term of council, another kick…
Nov 22
RT @CatsHurricane: To all public library staff doing the job of ten cos their colleagues have been made redundant I salute you #iamalibrari
Nov 22
RT @RichardAPeddie: Does Toronto losing talent like Andy Byford and @jen_keesmaat in the same year say anything about city hall leadership?
Nov 22
RT @rankandfileca: Thanks @RickMercer for supporting minimum wage increases on your show tonight #canlab #onpoli #PowerON #15andFairness
Nov 22
RT @betterlivesto: Plans and projects to improve Toronto are very important, and these initiatives must all receive full funding. Send a me…
Nov 22
RT @wylie_alan: To all public library staff who work day in day out to deliver a crucial statutory service in times of cuts, closures & hol…
Nov 22
RT @betterlivesto: Toronto City Council has approved plans to provide healthy breakfasts and snacks to thousands of children in the city, y…
Nov 21
RT @CUPEOntario: The trailer has arrived! In the absence of government leadership @CUPEOntario has rented a large winterized trailer to en…
Nov 21
RT @garthmullins: This is the labour movement I love. Right here. Nice one @CUPEOntario and nice work @TorontoOPS https://t.co/ra1WTNVU5h
Nov 21
RT @TorontoOPS: Thank you to @CUPEOntario for supporting our lifesaving work with this amazing trailer! https://t.co/Eq18pm8p8M
Nov 21
RT @LibrarianshipCA: Michael Redhill, Bellevue Square author, wins Giller Book Prize https://t.co/zAwPaJXmRy
Nov 21
RT @AndrewTumilty: Retweet if you don’t think people should wait an extra 3 years to earn a decent wage #ONpoli https://t.co/gB4hBIaaTr
Nov 21
RT @torontolabour: "Teachable moment" with @SaraMojtehedz + others talk about spread of #precariousWork in every sector of the economy at @…
Nov 21
RT @wylie_alan: Volunteers running book swaps, offshore arts orgs & entrepreneurs leasing/running 'community libs', blacklisting builders,…
Nov 21
RT @OPSEU: Labour needs strong @OntarioNDP to tackle precarious work: OPSEU #onpoli https://t.co/XSUl7nIYa5
Nov 21
RT @GillerPrize: The 2017 #GillerPrize winner is Bellevue Square by Michael Redhill(@stet_that) https://t.co/SnRiUuap3E https://t.co/Trhht
Nov 21
RT @cbcbooks: Michael Redhill(@stet_that) wins the 2017 #GillerPrize for novel Bellevue Square https://t.co/4cmHr3P3SC
Nov 21
RT @GillerPrize: The 2017 #GillerPrize winner is Bellevue Square by Michael Redhill(@stet_that) https://t.co/SnRiUuap3E https://t.co/Trhht
Nov 21
RT @AndreaHorwath: On #TransDayofRemembrance, and every day, we remember and honour those who have died as a result of transphobic hatred a…
Nov 19
RT @DyanooshY: College strikes a symptom of broken business model: Cohn https://t.co/kPyP378RZo via @torontostar
Nov 19
RT @kristynwongtam: Today started with @WomenWinTO training smart, progressive women to run for #TOcouncil. Thank you @bravotoronto @angval
Nov 19
RT @WAHC: We’re having a blast at #Sam22: so glad to have such wonderful supporters #canlab https://t.co/wtATyTwrSk
Nov 19
RT @buntyhoven: My piece on #Libraries. This is a snapshot of my working week. https://t.co/gbfXkCYwCr
Nov 19
RT @JSSBennett: NEW @OttawaCouncil Central LIBRARY BUILD absent from @ottawacity library budget. Project was to be joint venture between @o
Nov 19
RT @OPSEU560: During the strike, every college administrator has been paid as usual, every college manager the same. The CEC is on the payr…
Nov 19
RT @faisalkutty: Thank you Neethan Shan and Mohammed Hashim for your leadership with this program (and others) and thank you Shree... https…
Nov 19
RT @4rdYearsAgo: This account will tweet this article every day until election day 2018, to counter the inevitable false claims made by Dou…
Nov 19
RT @StandWithFac: For those who call faculty "greedy" for asking for an annual pay increase of 2% (in line with inflation, so flat pay in r…
Nov 19
RT @local350: CEC & colleges have stated that the NO vote was “a terrible result for students” You know what’s really terrible for the stu…
Nov 19
RT @MylesMagner: Defend #workersrights,free #collectivebargaining & #qualityeducation! Resist #BTW legislation. Pack the legislature galler…
Nov 18
RT @ScottTanaka: "How do you get the 5 weeks back? You work together, you work hard and you work for the common good @JPHornick OPSEU…
Nov 18
RT @CAATfaculty: Andrea Horwath speaks to BTW legislation re #COLLEGESTRIKE #StandWithFaculty https://t.co/KNtl1BfaHA
Nov 18
RT @AndreaHorwath: College faculty will go back to work Monday and students will be back Tuesday at the latest. That's after five weeks of…
Nov 17
RT @torontolabour: Liberals back-to-work legislation in the Ontario college dispute is wrong. Instead, they should commit to proper funding…
Nov 17
RT @OPSEU556: Captions are working now: https://t.co/pzvIDR2GbY#collegestrike
Nov 17
RT @betterlivesto: Status quo budgets won’t cut it for 2018. Time for leadership so we can make transit more reliable. Tell @JohnTory and…
Nov 17
RT @Cupe1989: That elusive Trafalgar pic! Such a fun #solidarity day visiting @local244, holding the line in Peel & Halton. Congrats to #CO
Nov 17
RT @Prof_Savage: Top heavy college administrations means less $ to fulfill academic mission and support students #collegstrike #StandWithFa
Nov 17
RT @WSJ: Reference librarians, the original search engines, say they’re busier than ever. https://t.co/OMNkznX3yr
Nov 17
RT @cupw: Finally seeing criminal charges against hate speech publication. You can count on postal workers to stand up against #antisemitis
Nov 17
RT @Alexa_Milne: Totally stupid. Get the librarians back. https://t.co/MXeh9qizpG
Nov 17
RT @StandWithFac: If you can't pay a living wage, your business is unsustainable #15AndFairness If your college can't function without s…
Nov 17
RT @fairwagesnow: BREAKING #Bill148 carries forward!! Despite corporate lobbyists' best efforts, $15 #minimumwage (phased in by Jan 1, 201…