CUPE Local 719 ratifies contract
The members of CUPE Local 719, Woodstock, NB municipal workers, have voted in favour of a new 4-year collective agreement.
“We are pleased with the collective agreement in which we achieved our main goal – protection of the municipal workers’ pension plan,” explained Tom Steep, CUPE National Representative.
The members returned to work on Monday, October 26, after being locked out since October 1 by the Town of Woodstock.
‘Sorry’ not enough, union leaders tell federal government
Four national union leaders joined NDP Aboriginal Affairs Critic Jean Crowder on Thursday, October 29 to tell the federal government that it will take more than an apology to improve conditions in Canada’s Aboriginal communities.
CUPE National President Paul Moist, CUPW National President Denis Lemelin, PSAC National President John Gordon, USWA National representative Pat Van Horne, and Crowder held a press conference in Ottawa to ask for urgent action from the federal government on key Aboriginal rights issues.
The press conference concludes a joint postcard campaign by CUPE’s Aboriginal Council and their counterpart at the PSAC, which will see thousands of signed postcards delivered to the Prime Minister outlining steps the government can take to improve Aboriginal human rights.
Erie Thames Power strike resolved
After 18 weeks on the picket lines, the strike at Erie Thames Power was settled on Friday, October 23, with outside employees ratifying a new four-year collective agreement with a vote of 77% acceptance.
“The local bargaining committee, strike committee and picketing members deserve our thanks, respect and congratulations for a job well done in very difficult circumstances,” said Power Workers’ Union President Don MacKinnon.
The outside employees returned to work on Tuesday, October 27. This follows an agreement reached one week earlier for the striking inside members.
New Agreement with Town of Mount-Royal
At a meeting held on Monday, October 26, 98% of outside workers at the Town of Mount-Royal accepted their new collective agreement, which will be in effect until 2014.
The contract provides for annual wage increases of 2 % to 2.75 %. In exchange for work reorganisation which allows for productivity gains, the union will have a minimum staffing clause. In addition, manual workers will see their work week lengthened by two hours for a total of 38 hours per week, with paid 30-minute meal breaks.
“Once again, we have shown our willingness to offer quality public services” said Michel Parent, President of the Syndicat des cols bleus regroupés de Montréal (CUPE 301). “We can agree with everybody. For now, it’s still an impasse at the City of Montréal, but when we have serious, open partners we can go a long way together”.
Labour and political leaders rally for pensioners
Several thousand Nortel workers converged on Parliament Hill last week to demand justice and to call on the federal government to overhaul Canada’s unfair bankruptcy laws.
More than 2,000 companies are currently under bankruptcy protection across the country. As it stands now, when an employer files for protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA), workers go to the back of the line, behind other creditors, like banks and suppliers.
CUPE National President Paul Moist was there to extend CUPE’s full support, along with CLC President Ken Georgetti, CEP President Dave Coles and opposition leaders Jack Layton, Gilles Duceppe, and Michael Ignatieff.
CUPE launches public child care tour
CUPE is launching a cross-country tour promoting publicly-delivered early childhood care and education – a move that would benefit children and parents, boost the economy, and stem the tide of for-profit child care.
The tour’s slogan is “A great place to grow – public child care”. It features academics, advocates and CUPE activists, and aims to raise awareness and mobilize support for public bodies like school boards or local governments delivering child care.
Forum participants include Martha Friendly and Susan Prentice, co-authors of a new book, About Canada: Childcare.
For more information and tour dates, visit: http://cupe.ca/child-care/public-child-care-tour