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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Recent Tweets

Jan 16
RT @4948Warriors: Send a message to Mayor Tory today. Let’s tell City Hall that Staffless Libraries are a BAD IDEA! https://t.co/DsbQSyExY
Jan 16
RT @GShankz#Staffless #libraries are a scary thought which may be a reality if @torontolibrary gets its way! Tell @JohnTory and library b…
Jan 16
RT @wylie_alan @Local4948 @4948Warriors @CUPEOntario @torontolabour Solidarity for ever
Jan 16
#LibraryWarriors getting the message out on #stafflesslibraries - response has been great! Sign the online petition… https://t.co/9BXqHGfYur
Jan 08
Save the date #WomenMarchOn Sat Jan 19 from 12 - 3 pm. Watch for details https://t.co/Wc8u9qa0rs#LibraryWarriors w… https://t.co/qrG4quGI8C
Jan 03
RT @4948Warriors: This is NOT my Toronto. KWT is the kind of councillor we need more of. Its why library workers support Women Win TO and a…
Jan 03
Aimed at our friends to the South - but relevant to Canadians too. https://t.co/uCbX3cEBMg#publiclibrary… https://t.co/RTxbebMPQZ
27 Dec 2018
RT @wylie_alan: In 2019 we need to focus less on libraries in terms of leisure and focus more on libraries in terms of reading (literacy/bo…
27 Dec 2018
RT @wylie_alan: https://t.co/aeyYegrY0n Closing 25 libraries, handing 18 to volunteers and slashing £2m from libraries budget is “not about…
15 Dec 2018
California library worker murdered by banned patron. https://t.co/P12Ce6TTxA@4948Warriors Heartbreaking. And terr… https://t.co/i9iNhIHF6f
13 Dec 2018
RT @progresstoronto: ACTION: tell Toronto city council and Mayor Tory to vote against Doug Ford’s attempt to takeover the TTC. Councillors…
13 Dec 2018
RT @4948Warriors: This is absolutely true that we need a long term funding solution for our libraries - starts from within - staffless libr…
Jen
13 Dec 2018
RT @corr_mc: I didn’t know this was a thing, but my Union sent a onesie and it’s super cute! Thank you 🤗 https://t.co/yl6OvHbWcI
05 Dec 2018
RT @wylie_alan: Groundbreaking' community library opens in the Chew Valley https://t.co/H7m35qDz6Z - this volunteer-led ‘library’ is house…
05 Dec 2018
RT @FredHahnCUPE: A great way to spend a #Saturday #Solidarity is a verb #peopleforposties @CUPEOntario @fairwagesnow#onpoli https://t.c
05 Dec 2018
RT @Lindainred @Local4948 @4948Warriors Where can I get one of those signs
03 Dec 2018
#LibraryWarriors out at #stafflless #TodmordenLibrary today. Community members not supportive of library w/o staf… https://t.co/oRbTMA0tBS
03 Dec 2018
RT @4948Warriors: Not to mention that local dollars are being funnelled to a Swiss based company instead of employing young people in our c…
03 Dec 2018
RT @4948Warriors: Alan thank you for all of your work on behalf of our public library. Sadly @torontolibrary world’s busiest urban library…
03 Dec 2018
RT @wylie_alan @4948Warriors @torontolibrary @Local4948 @vbowlestpl @JohnTory @torontolabour @cupenat Solidarity, we have at least 119 ‘st…
03 Dec 2018
RT @wylie_alan @4948Warriors @torontolibrary @Local4948 @vbowlestpl @JohnTory @torontolabour @cupenat The ‘open+’ (staffless library) mode…
03 Dec 2018
RT @4948Warriors: Todmorden and Swansea - for now @Local4948#TOpoli #torontolabour https://t.co/UvpMnkdEql
03 Dec 2018
RT @4948Warriors: Even gets around contract language because no staff is being harmed because there is no staff! Lost opportunities for yo…
03 Dec 2018
RT @LibraryJournal: Toronto Public Library Workers Campaign to Bring Awareness About Dangers of "Staffless Libraries" https://t.co/AjGPSaz8
03 Dec 2018
Toronto Public Library Workers begin campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of #stafflesslibrarieshttps://t.co/Q20AKyyvlF
01 Dec 2018
RT @bravo_alej: The future of a fair city right here https://t.co/IxbC7qeIGj
01 Dec 2018
RT @4948Warriors: Library Warriors at@progresstoronto⁩ event. Growing a progressive voice in TO Here we come #TOpoli @local4948@broadb
01 Dec 2018
RT @4948Warriors: Celebrating a progressive vision of our city with@Brandon4948⁩ and@GShankz⁩ at@progresstoronto⁩ event@Local4948⁩…
16 Nov 2018
A huge thank you to @CUPEOntario and to the awesome @FredHahnCUPE + to all the activists @4948Warriors who spoke… https://t.co/B96YDEMp1X
15 Nov 2018
Respect to @iatse58 members for their courageous fight against a terrible employer. You fought the hard fight.… https://t.co/I3WrM1axK5
15 Nov 2018
RT @TiffanyBalducci: Happening TOMORROW!! Send a message NOW if you haven’t yet! #OMERS #MyOmers https://t.co/AEbh2z35qD
15 Nov 2018
RT @cupe932: Retired and this doesn't affect you? The Ontario Pensions Act is the only thing standing between you and these proposed change…
15 Nov 2018
RT @CIPPOttawa: Today is your last chance to tell the OMERS SC Board to vote NO! to the Proposed Pension Changes visit https://t.co/TigJZ7c
15 Nov 2018
RT @torontolabour: Respect to the members of @iatse58 who stood strong for all these months to defend their contract. We were honoured to s…
14 Nov 2018
Urgent: sign and share! https://t.co/hyQoh5X0FC to stop the cuts to your OMERS pension! The vote is taking place o… https://t.co/Jqb2OcTpZy
14 Nov 2018
Another painful chapter for Longueuil library workers https://t.co/qwBPNYYUdd#longueuil @cupeont @4948Torontohttps://t.co/2JMW9gYP7u
07 Nov 2018
Calgary Library Workers are awesome #NSCC2018 #LibraryWarriors @CUPEOntario#respect https://t.co/qW7ZjuZK9F
07 Nov 2018
RT @fairwagesnow: VIDEO: Here's why #15andFairness is a way BETTER DEAL for #OnPoli's lowest paid workers, than Premier @fordnation's t…
06 Nov 2018
Email your MPP - Fight for $15 and Fairness #NSCC2018@CUPEOntario⁩ Do it now #onpoli @4948toronto#15andFairness… https://t.co/bWqLIsrUVd
06 Nov 2018
@FredHahnCUPE⁩ at #CUPE2018 with fiery address on the dangerous rise of right-wing populism built on hate +divisiv… https://t.co/xrdKYmgpvq
06 Nov 2018
RT @bersonphoto: Excited @CUPEOntario members line-up for start of annual 4 day convention in Toronto #cupe2018 @cupenat#Toronto https://t