UFCW Local 175 President Shawn Haggerty

Shawn Haggerty

President, Local 175 UFCW Canada

Spring 2020: Thank you to our Members for your strength and dedication

I want to start this message to you, our Members, by extending a huge thank you to each and every one of you. To all of you who went and continue to go to work and do your jobs with care throughout the current COVID-19 crisis – thank you. To those who had to self-isolate or quarantine for themselves or to look after loved ones – thank you. To everyone who stays home when they can and practices physical distancing to help protect the most vulnerable among us – thank you.

I know that our Members in every industry are strong, resilient, and dedicated. And I know that many of you are scared and exhausted, too. This situation is putting unprecedented stress on you and your families.

Your Union has always known the value of your labour. I hope that these last few weeks has shown the true value of your labour to your employers as well.

We continue to fight for our health care workers who are doing life-saving work each and every day, often under-staffed and always overworked. We continue to fight for our retail grocery and pharmacy workers who face huge line ups, empty shelves, and impatient customers while trying to navigate their jobs safely. We continue to fight for our food supply chain workers at all levels – from the factory floor to warehouses and shipping – who keep food products moving across our country. We continue to fight for sanitation workers who have the heavy task of making sure many businesses, hospitals, and factories are clean.

Your Union continues to fight to make all employers recognize your essential work and that they must do everything to provide you with a safe work environment.

Some employers have stepped up in this crisis to provide premiums for working through this crisis, and some have even provided top ups to Employment Insurance (EI), paid time off for quarantines or required self-isolation, and more. We were also encouraged to see so many improve health and safety protocols to protect your health and safety on the job. Some employers with layoffs and closures have ensured continuation of benefits by paying those premiums for their out-of-work employees.

One of the things this crisis has confirmed is; yes, employers, the government, and the public to some degree have long-undervalued many kinds of jobs. The crisis also highlights that workers wouldn’t have to be as scared or beg their employers for paid sick leave, better wages, child care provisions, and stricter health and safety precautions, if the current government actually wanted to protect working people.

But, among some of the first things Doug Ford did was:

  • Halt minimum wage increases at $14 per hour.
  • Cancel the already inadequate TWO paid sick days per year and replace them with three UNPAID days.
  • Throw out the 10 Personal Emergency Leave days per year.

It’s disheartening that it takes a crisis of this magnitude for our government to provide working people with even the most basic of human rights. Do we really need to reach this level of emergency to recognize that workers in health care, in the food supply chain, in sanitation, in transportation, in maintenance, in public works and public services, and many more industries are indispensable and integral to keeping Canadians healthy, safe, and fed?

While I do commend the government for stepping up in this time of great need, we cannot forget that some of the first actions Doug Ford took when he was sworn into office were anti-worker. This is why we lobby, constantly, to all levels of government to do better for working people. We will continue to push the government to maintain and improve pay and protection for all workers throughout this crisis and after.

The truth is you were always essential: it took this crisis for the public, your employers, and our government to recognize it.

Stay strong and safe. Your Union is here for you.

In Solidarity,

Shawn Haggerty
President, Local 175 UFCW Canada

UFCW Local 175 Secretary-Treasurer Kelly Tosato

Kelly Tosato

Secretary-Treasurer, Local 175 UFCW Canada

Spring 2020: The fight to protect working people

This is a strange time. The COVID-19 pandemic has proved to be a real test of who we are and what working people truly mean to the prosperity and well-being of this nation. It’s clear that it will be working people – our Union Members – who will get all of us through this.

Unions have always fought to protect workers; to advance their economic status and quality of life; to ensure their human rights are respected; to bring equity to every industry across the nation.

Unions emerged more than century ago out of a desperate need to make work bearable; to raise the quality of life for families toiling long days in often harsh conditions for very little pay. Workers were at the complete mercy of their employers.

March 25, 2020, marked 109 years since the Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire in New York City. That preventable disaster took 146 lives and forever changed many more. Locked doors, doors that opened the wrong way, tables, and more, prevented the victims – mostly women – from getting out of the factory in time. They were trapped.

That tragedy sent a surge of grief, anger, and resiliency through the working people in that city and beyond. It led to changes like putting sprinklers in high-rises, and ensuring that exit doors swung outwards.

Many health and safety practices that seem 'every day' suddenly, are more important than ever – like safe food handling procedures and ensuring there are enough masks, gloves, and protective equipment for our health care workers.

We all take many of today’s health and safety measures for granted. Whether it’s adhering to the fire code, painting caution lines in warehouses, stacking shelves and pallets properly, and much more. Most of today's health and safety laws are a result of working people and their Unions standing up and demanding better.

Working people and the labour movement have always fought to bring about change:

  • The Printers’ Strike in 1872 to win a nine-hour work day;
  • The Winnipeg General Strike in 1919 to win fair wages;
  • A workplace tragedy in the 1960s that brought about the Industrial Safety Act followed later by the Canada Labour Safety Code, and;
  • The addition of paid maternity leave in 1971, allowing more women to be in the workforce.

I know that there will be changes as we emerge from this crisis in the coming months: changes to our laws and worker protections; changes to health and safety protocols to ensure we have enough equipment on hand at all times. Your Union will fight to have these types of changes find a permanent place in our laws.

It shouldn’t take such unprecedented circumstances for employers and governments to recognize the value of their workers. Your work is – and always has been – something to be proud of. I encourage you, as we start to see the light at the end of this tunnel, to remain vigilant and committed to advancing worker safety across all industries.

Your Union will continue to support and work for you. We will continue to handle grievances, conduct negotiations, and be there to hear your concerns and answer your questions. We will continue to do the work of protecting our members in every way possible.

Please don’t forget about those most vulnerable in your community. If you can assist others, safely, by getting their groceries or much-needed medicine, please do what you can. Please continue to support local businesses, charities, and service providers when you can, safely.

If you need extra support, the Members’ Assistance Program offers confidential referral services to the Members of our Local Union. They can put you in touch with services in your community to help you with finances, well-being, and more. Call them at 1-877-801-7762. Full details can be found here.

Thank you all for your dedication to families and communities across this nation who rely on you for care, food, and much more. I am confident we will make it through this with lessons learned and, hopefully, our eyes wide open to the things that must change in our province and across the country.

In Solidarity,

Kelly Tosato
Secretary-Treasurer, UFCW Local 175


Local 175

Shawn Haggerty – President
Kelly Tosato – Secretary-Treasurer
Karen Vaughan – Recorder


Rick Alagierski, Glen Avila, Lucy Bedore, Chris Bernardi, Maggie Brayson, Lorne Bruce, Paul Capranos, Michael Collins, Al Couture, Kelly Dick, Michelle Dow, Ozren Elezovic, Ross Fraser, Lynne Grant, Rob Hamilton, Dawn Hanlon, Shirley Hepditch, Jennifer Hoskins, Kimberly Hunter, Scott Jackson, Kelly Kobitz, Carolyn Levesque, Murray Macrae, Jose Marteniano, Julia Mcaninch, Sharon McMahon, Cheryl Miner, Jim Montgomery, Tony Morello, Jean Patenaude, Jamesantony Pathmarajah, Toni Pettitt, Alan Reston, Louis Rocha, Terry Rombough, Joy Searles, Linda Souliere, Leighton Stephenson, Rick Szyja, Navidad Talbot, Jonathan Van Egmond, Lori Wallis, Byron Williams, Michael Windley.

Local 633

Marylou Mallett – President
Brian Kozlowski – Secretary-Treasurer
Julie Hinsperger – Recorder


Dennis Gagnon, Dale Stuart, Rita-Lynn Swiderski.


Officers of Local 175

Shawn Haggerty – President
Kelly Tosato – Secretary-Treasurer
Karen Vaughan – Recorder
Rob Armbruster – Executive Assistant to the President
Sylvia Groom – Executive Assistant to the President
Jim McLean – Executive Assistant to the President


Officers of Local 633

Marylou Mallett – President
Brian Kozlowski – Secretary-Treasurer
Julie Hinsperger – Recorder

Region 1

(Thunder Bay Office)
807-346-4227 – 1-800-465-6932 – fax 807-346-4055
Director – Sandra Rogerson
Union Representatives – Alex Stubbs, Tracy Stubbs

Region 2

(Mississauga Office)
905-821-8329 – 1-800-565-8329 – fax 905-821-7144
Director – Angela Mattioli
Union Representatives – Farman Ali, Rick Daudlin, John DiFalco, Casey Magee, Christina Mayberry, Tony Nigro, and Meemee Seto.

Region 3

(Ottawa & Cornwall Offices)
613-725-2154 – 1-800-267-5295 – fax 613-725-2328
Director – Daniel Mercier
Union Representatives – Shannon Epp, Paul Hardwick, Dean McLaren, Jacques Niquet, Joe Tenn; Servicing Representative – Sandra Proulx

Region 4

(Mississauga Office)
905-821-8329 – 1-800-565-8329 – fax 905-821-7144
Director – John Di Nardo
Servicing Representatives – Colleen Cox, Virginia Haggith, Jennifer Hanley, Tim Kelly, Sabrina Qadir, Arlene Robertson, Chris Watson.

Region 5

(Cambridge & Leamington Offices)
Cambridge: 519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Leamington: 519-326-6751 – 1-888-558-5114 – fax 519-326-0597

Director – Jehan Ahamed
Union Representatives – Joce Cote, Mario Tardelli, Ashleigh Vink
Servicing Representatives – Rolando Cabral

Region 6

(Hamilton Office)
905-545-8354 – 1-800-567-2125 – fax 905-545-8355
Director – Rob Nicholas
Union Representatives – Sam Caetano, Matt Davenport, Dave Forbes, Jason Hanley, Lee Johnson-Koehn, Mike Mattioli, Brad Morrison, Melody Slattery, Fred Teeple.

Region 7

(Cambridge Office)
519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Director – Chris Fuller
Union Representatives – Diane Sanvido, Steve Springall
Servicing Representatives – Dan Bondy, Todd Janes

Region 8

(Sudbury Office)
705-674-0768 – 1-800-465-1722 – fax 705-674-6815
Director – Derik McArthur
Union Representatives – Jeff Barry, John Beaton, Jim Hames, Derek Jokhu

Workers’ Compensation Department
519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Sharon Kempf – Director
Joanne Ford, Phil Hames, Sarah Neath – Workers’ Compensation Representatives; Georgina MacDonald – Intake Representative

Health & Safety
519-658-0252 – 1-800-267-1977 – fax 519-658-0255
Sharon Kempf – Director
Ron McGuire, Mary Shaw – Health & Safety Representatives

Legal Department

Jane Mulkewich – Director
Shauna Fabrizi, Mary Hurley, Matthew Jagodits, Silvia Neagu – Legal Counsel

Organizing Department
1-800-565-8329 / 905-821-8329
Rick Wauhkonen – Director
Linval Dixon, Tim Hum, Jeffery Lu, Lionel MacEachern, Amy Tran – Organizing Representatives
Ricardo Bocanegra – Organizing Apprentice

Communications Department
1-800-565-8329 / 905-821-8329
Jennifer Tunney – Senior Communications Representative
Laurie Duncan – Communications Representative

Training & Education call 1-800-267-1977
Rob Armbruster – Director
Kelly Nicholas – Co-ordinator
Russel Evans – Training Representative
Tim Deelstra – Engagement & Media Relations Strategist

Pay Equity

Sharon Kempf – Director
Orsola Augurusa, Matt Davenport, Union Representatives