ABBOTSFORD,BC - Abbotsford City Council has approved a Memorandum of Agreement reached on Thursday and ratified yesterday by members of CUPE 774, bringing to an end a 24-day job action. Employees will return to work tomorrow (July 30).
The five-year agreement, which is retroactive to January 1, 2005 and ends on December 31, 2009, includes general wage increases of 3% per year from 2005 through 2008 and a wage increase of 3.5% in 2009. The City will also match the average of wage settlements negotiated for 2009 in the local governments of Chilliwack, Mission and Langley Township if they are greater than 3.5%.
Other highlights of the settlement include:
- $70,000 for market adjustments for positions below market in 2006;
- $70,000 for market adjustments for positions below market in 2008;
- Improvements to the benefit package.
“We are pleased that the dispute between the parties has been settled,” said CUPE 774 president Joe Rodrigue. “The Memorandum of Agreement reached redresses to some extent the wage disparity for the union. We want to thank the citizens of Abbotsford for the support they have shown us during this dispute.”
The tentative agreement follows a difficult set of negotiations that began in April 2005. The collective agreement expired on December 31, 2004. The Local’s 463 members voted 82 percent in favour of strike action in May, and went on strike on June 26. Wage parity with other municipalities and term of agreement were major issues in negotiations.
On July 13, CUPE 774 members rejected an agreement reached with the City. This time, the ratification vote passed with more than 80 percent of members supporting the package.
Contact: Barry O’Neill, CUPE BC president, 604.340.6768
Dan Gawthrop: Communications representative, 604.999.6132