Wadena: School support workers in the Wadena School Division are on the picket line again today, after the employer refused to drop its demand for concessions at the bargaining table yesterday.
The two sides met yesterday afternoon in Wadena with the assistance of provincial conciliator Doug Forseth. Within a few hours, it was clear the employer was not interested in achieving an agreement.
The employer was just going through the motions at the negotiating table yesterday in an effort to avoid more charges of bargaining in bad faith, says CUPE spokesperson Sheila Bindig. The board is not interested in reaching an agreement.
Bindig says the employers offer was even worse than the package the school workers rejected in the spring, when they began rotating strike action.
Today marks the 118th day the school support workers have been on the picket line. The strike affects schools in Wadena, Kelvington, Lintlaw, Archerwill, Rose Valley, Quill Lake and the Quill Lake Hutterite Colony.
Bindig says the school division board will have a lot to answer for at the special public meeting tonight at 7:30 p.m. in Fosston, a community just north of Wadena. A group of electors in the school division have demanded the school board organize the meeting, as required under the Education Act.
Many parents and residents are upset with the division boards handling of this round of contract negotiations, says Bindig. They are demanding answers and action.
Electors are using tonights meeting to call for the removal of Board Chair Rose Olson and Bill Wells a negotiator with the Saskatchewan School Board Association (formerly the Saskatchewan School Trustees Association). They also want the resignation of the school divisions Director of Education John Treso from the bargaining committee.
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For more information contact:
Sheila Bindig at 338-3121