OLG refuses raise for unionized workers at Rideau Carleton Raceway Slots, but gives 2% raise to other staff

21 December 2015

Locked out workers at the Rideau Carleton Raceway Slots (RCRS), operated by the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG), have learned that almost all non-unionized OLG staff will be receiving a 2% wage increase.

Before the lockout, the OLG, which registered $2 billion in net profit last year, had insisted at the bargaining table that it was under a strict mandate that required it to freeze wages for the first two years of the new contract, covering the January 2014 to January 2016 period. Yet, on December 17, one day after the lockout, the OLG announced in a company memo that almost all non-unionized staff will be receiving a 2% wage increase retroactive to March 2015.

“Our members are shocked and angry,” said Larry Rousseau, Regional Executive Vice-President of the Public Service Alliance of Canada—National Capital Region. “They are shocked that the OLG kept insisting it was following a no-raise mandate as late as the last bargaining session on December 14, and then a mere three days later, seeing it announce a 2% raise for non-union staff.”

“These workers have not received a raise since 2009,” added Doug Marshall, President of the Union of National Employees, a component of PSAC. “For the OLG to propose continuing the wage freeze for unionized staff at the Slots while at the same time announcing this raise for others is deeply disrespectful to the locked out workers. It’s really a slap in the face.”

The 124 workers, unionized with the Public Service Alliance of Canada, were locked out on December 16 after their bargaining team rejected an OLG proposal to freeze wages for an additional two years and remove existing pension language from the current collective agreement. The bargaining team’s position was later echoed by the broader union membership, which rejected the employer’s proposal by a 96% vote.

Prior to the lockout, the workers served in a variety of roles, including as parking attendants, housekeepers, slot attendants, slot technicians, cashiers and money room clerks.