Over the past two weeks, millions of Canadians have voiced their disgust and displeasure with the retaliatory measures taken by several Tim Hortons franchise owners in Ontario, against their workforce.
The decision to claw-back health benefits and paid breaks, cut overnight shift premiums, start charging for uniforms, ban the receipt of tips by their workers and to cancel perks, are examples of the type of actions taken by these bad bosses to punish their workers – for the recent increase to Ontario’s minimum wage, which, effective January 1, 2018, rose to $14.00, from $11.60 an hour.
On January 9, Ontario Federation of Labour President, Chris Buckley sent an open letter to the President of the Tim Hortons brand and CEO of Restaurant Brands International Inc. (RBI), Daniel Schwartz, calling on him to take immediate action to reverse the decisions to punish these workers.
The following day, the Ontario Federation of Labour, in partnership with the Fight for $15 & Fairness, labour councils, activists and concerned Canadians, launched an emergency day of action targeting 17 Tim Hortons locations across Ontario.
To date, neither RBI Inc. CEO Daniel Schwartz, Tim Hortons Corporate Office or their franchise owners have adequately responded to our request to meet, or intervene to reverse the decision to cut hours, benefits and paid breaks from their front-line workers.
As such, the Fight for 15 & Fairness, the OFL and the Canadian Labour Congress are escalating this matter to a full Canada-Wide Day of Action against Tim Horton’s parent company – Restaurant Brands International Inc. (RBI).
The Canada-Wide Day of Action in support of Tim Hortons workers is Friday, January 19, 2018.
We are calling on every provincial and territorial labour federation, as well as affiliates, labour councils, activists, students and retirees – join us in this campaign for decent work.
It is our job to ensure that all working people are treated fairly, with decency and respect.
1. Host an Action on January 19! Encourage affiliates, labour councils, activists, retirees and students to join with community partners (like Fight for $15 & Fairness chapters), poverty activists, and concerned customers by staging an information session at local Tim Hortons locations in your communities.
These information sessions or solidarity pickets can last anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, and are useful for informing the public, and business owners that organized labour supports the struggle of all precarious and vulnerable workers.
Be sure to inform local media of the event, and why you stand with Tim Hortons workers!
2. Share the attached “information flyer” with your network, and encourage them to hand them out to customers during those scheduled actions in your community.
3. Sign the petition addressing Daniel Schwartz, CEO Restaurant Brands International Inc. (RBI) (parent company of Tim Hortons). Join us in circulating this information through your organizational email lists and social media accounts.
4. Show support for Tim Hortons workers by:
– Emailing Tim Hortons directly by visiting www.15andFairness.org
– Calling Tim Hortons: 905-845-6511.
– Social Media – Tweet @TimHortons and be sure to use hashtags: #TimHortons #IStandWithTimHortonsWorkers, #15andFairness, #CLC, #OFL and your own union, federation and labour council.
– Circulate the attached meme through your social media channels.
Note: We are not calling for a full boycott of Tim Hortons. Rather, we hope to pressure RBI Inc. – the parent company of Tim Hortons, to do the right thing, and reverse the decision to punish their workers for getting a mandated raise in pay.
There is a groundswell of support in communities across Canada. Canadians are “waking up to smell the coffee” – every worker, especially those being continually disadvantaged through business models predicated on exploitation, deserve better, and deserve the protection of a union.
Please join us in sending a clear message to big business, like Tim Hortons, and to every employer intent on disadvantaging their workers. We stand with Tim Hortons workers!
CHRIS BUCKLEY, President, Ontario Federation of Labour
HASSAN YUSSUFF, President, Canadian Federation of Labour