CNE returns to Toronto amid ongoing strike by unionized safety inspectors

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The Canadian National Exhibition is returning to Toronto this week amid an ongoing strike by unionized safety inspectors.

The inspectors, who are represented by the Ontario Public Service Employees Union, walked off the job on July 21 after contract negotiations with the Technical Standards and Safety Authority broke down.

The CNE says it has taken steps to ensure the labour action doesn't compromise the safety of visitors, vendors or staff.

It says TSSA management has taken ``proactive measures'' such as travelling to other fair sites to inspect equipment ahead of its arrival at the CNE.

The CEO of the Canadian National Exhibition Association, Darrell Brown, says the fair also has its own safety engineering team to conduct additional checks on top of TSSA inspections.

Brown says he's concerned, however, that picketing outside the fair could discourage people from attending as the event seeks to bounce back from the financial setbacks of the COVID-19 pandemic.