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Halifax– Contract talks have broken off between the Progress Centre for Early Intervention in Halifax and CUPE.

CUPE National Representative Naomi Stewart says, “In conciliation talks today, the employer informed us that there is no new funding from the provincial government so they are offering employees a one-year deal with no wage increases.  Meanwhile, these employees have had the same starting salary for 15 years.

The members of Local 5054 have been trying to negotiate a first contract for two-and-a-half years now and lay the blame squarely on inadequate funding from the province. The issue of wages in this sector must be addressed, ” says Stewart.

CUPE says there has been a pattern established in wage settlements tied to provincial funding, which included increases of 7.5% over three years. 
Stewart explains that the recently renamed Department of Education and Early Childhood Development has taken over jurisdiction for the centre from the Department of Community Services.

A work stoppage at this facility is not what we want to see. It will have a dramatic impact on the families and children that our members provide services to,” says Stewart.
CUPE represents 13 employees at the Progress Centre including Early Interventionists, Library Technicians, Administrative Assistants and Playgroup Co-ordinators.

The members of Local 5054 voted 100% in favour of strike action this past May.

For information: 

Naomi Stewart    
CUPE National Representative 
(902) 455-4180 (o)   

John McCracken
CUPE Communications Representative
(902) 455-4180 (o)