The CNE says safety is a "top priority."
An ongoing inspectors strike has forced the Canadian National Exhibition to reassure attendees that the fair's safety isn't compromised four days before its grand reopening.
Concerns about the event first popped up on July 21, 2022, after negotiations between the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) and the Ontario Public Services Employees Union (OPSEU) broke down.
The latter reignited those fears via Twitter on Sunday.
"It just takes one accident… it's time for TSSA to get back to bargaining and protect public safety," the tweet read. "Stop TSSA Ontario's union busting tactics and protect public safety."
\u201c5 days til @LetsGoToTheEX opens and safety inspectors who check every nut & bolt and propane tank at CNE are still on #strikeforsafety. We love the CNE and want to keep it safe! @krasheedmpp help save the CNE \u2013 stop @TSSAOntario\u2019s union busting tactics & protect public safety.\u201d— OPSEU (@OPSEU) 1660492898
NDP MPP Kristyn Wong-Tam shared similar concerns on social media, warning that the absence of the inspectors could affect the function of everything from the CNE'S propane stations to its amusement rides.
"Without a fair contract, public safety is being compromised by Doug Ford. Ontario families and workers deserve better," Wong-Tam argued.
\u201cThe CNE opens in FIVE days and the TASSA safety inspectors are on strike. They inspect every propane dispensing station, amusement ride and food truck. Without a fair contract, public safety is being compromised by Doug Ford. Ontario families and workers deserve better. #onpoli\u201d— Kristyn Wong-Tam (@Kristyn Wong-Tam) 1660403973
Despite the raised alarms, officials at the Ex have maintained that the fair will be up to code this year, stating that it's been "vigilantly preparing" since July to ensure the labour disruption would not impact operations.
"Safety is a top priority, and the CNE maintains the highest safety standards in the industry," the statement reads.
"In addition to TSSA inspections and certifications, the CNE dedicates a significant amount of resources to deploy its own third-party safety consultants and certified engineers to ensure that all rides and installations at the event exceed safety standards. We want to assure our patrons that the CNE is safe; irrespective of the ongoing labour dispute between TSSA and OPSEU," it adds.