SQUAMISH, B.C. — Unionized staff who work for the District of Squamish have ratified a four-year collective agreement following six months of negotiations. The agreement contains a wage increase in each of four years, benefits improvements, a nine-day fortnight and other provisions.
“The union and employer engaged in a respectful and productive round of bargaining and the outcome has broad support, evidenced in our 90 per cent ratification vote on September 14,” said Jim Allan, president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 2269.
CUPE members will see wages increase by 2.5% for 2004, 2.5% in 2005, 3% in 2006 and 3.5% plus a cost of living allowance increase in 2007. In terms of benefit improvements, vision care coverage has increased and the lifetime limit in the extended health plan was removed.
Robin Jones, CUPE national representative, who was at the table with Local 2269 said that while Squamish managed to reach a reasonable agreement with its workers, the municipality of Whistler continues to stall on finding a settlement with its unionized employees. Jones, who works with CUPE Local 2010 in Whistler, urged that municipality to take steps to settle what has been a long and bitter dispute.
The Squamish agreement covers approximately 170 inside and outside employees of the District of Squamish. The agreement expires in 2007.
CUPE national representative
CUPE 2269 president