Halifax protesters march in solidarity with Ontario Tim Hortons workers


A Tim Hortons franchisee has filed a class-action lawsuit claiming that RBI (Restaurant Brands International) is making use of money from a nationwide advertising fund in an improper manner.

Other cities involved in the protest included Calgary, Halifax, Saskatoon, Regina, Vancouver and two other cities in British Columbia.

"It's to protest the clawbacks that this particular Tim Hortons location has done to employees in retribution of the $14 minimum wage increase", Briana Broderick, president of the Kingston District Labour Council, said in an interview on Friday.

"Where this used to be a 24-hour Tim Hortons, and in fact it was used as a refuge and warm-up station for the homeless population around MacDonnell Street, now it's going to be closed at 11 p.m. and open at 5 a.m".

"This is just one slice of the hard decisions that Ontario business owners are having to face", she said.

About 50 demonstrations were planned in cities across the country on Friday, although at least 38 were based in Ontario, including 18 planned in Toronto. The province raised the wage by 15 cents a year ago. All of the employees receive health benefits and paid breaks and he said he doesn't want to change that.

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He says they are working diligently to capture as much data as possible about employers who respect their workers and the recent workplace law improvements and, also those that conduct themselves in opposition to these improvements.

While Tim Hortons has become a big part of the minimum-wage conversation, Coates insisted the demonstration wasn't against the restaurant.

"There needs to be a recognition that no one who works should live in poverty", she said.

Wynne says she's happy to talk to any business owner about the wage hike but says taking frustrations out on employees is not fair.

Rally organizers said they're planning another rally in about a month and they believe it's important to keep the pressure on the province and big coporations to let them know their workers are watching.

Protesters angered by some Ontario Tim Hortons franchisees who slashed workers' benefits and breaks after the province raised its minimum wage plan to spread their rallies to other areas of the country.