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WHISTLER Employees with the Resort Municipality of Whistler say their employer is a playground bully, citing unfair labour practices and imposed conditions of employment.

Whistler may be a playground, as they say on their web site, but somebodys got to maintain it. Thats what we do, says CUPE national representative Robin Jones.

We are dealing with an employer who doesnt want to negotiate, punishes employees for exercising their rights, and picks and chooses when to follow the rules, Jones said. Working for Whistler is like working for the playground bully.

CUPE 3853 has been trying to get a new collective agreement for 10 bylaw enforcement officers and seven wastewater treatment plant workers whose contract expired two years ago. They are also trying to negotiate contract coverage for 13 utilities workers organized in April 2004. The CUPE local represents 30 workers altogether.

Just because we work in a resort community, doesnt mean we dont deserve respect, decent wages and good working conditions like all other municipal employees across the province, Jones added.

An informal Labour Relations Board hearing is scheduled for later this week to hear charges that the municipality has engaged in unfair labour practices and not complied with agreed-upon terms and conditions of employment.

CUPE represents 23,000 municipal workers with 146 collective agreements across British Columbia.


Robin Jones, CUPE National Representative, (604) 314-6586; Diane Kalen, CUPE Communications, (778) 229-0258.