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NORTH BAY, ON. – Members of Local 1165-6 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), representing three transportation technicians who plan and ensure bus routing and transportation services for the Near North District School Board, the Nipissing-Parry Sound Catholic District School Board, Le Conseil scolaire de district du Nord-Est de l’Ontario, and the Conseil scolaire Franco-Nord, have voted 100 per cent in favour of strike action if mediation talks scheduled for Friday, September 16th, fail to reach a settlement.

We are committed to fighting for a fair contract,” said Randy Milne, president of CUPE 1165. “Our members work hard to make sure children get to school safely and on time, and management is refusing to recognize our contribution to education in our communities.” The workers are employed by a transportation consortium, Student Transportation Services Nipissing Parry Sound, providing transportation services to all four area school boards.

Management negotiators have tabled inadequate wage increases and they are demanding concessions around job security. Under management proposals, employees would also pay more than the employer for the benefit plan. “The employer wants to have the right to contract out our members’ work and they are pushing a two-tier sick leave plan, where new employees would not benefit from the same sick leave provisions as existing workers – that’s simply not acceptable.”

Friday’s talks will give management an opportunity to offer us a fair contract and back away from concession demands,” said Milne. “If we don’t achieve a fair settlement, students and parents could face a transportation nightmare – that’s the last thing we want.”

For further information, please contact:

Monique Drapeau
CUPE national representative
(705) 474-9765

Randy Milne
CUPE 1165 president
(705) 471-6360 (cell)

Robert Lamoureux
CUPE communications
(416) 292-3999