PORTAGE LA PRAIRIE - After two weeks on the picket line, the 24 professional and support staff of the Child and Family Services (Central Region) are back at work.
Negotiations over the last week resulted in an agreement on outstanding issues on March 28. The members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees, Local 2483 voted unanimously to accept an offer that included a wage increase and changes to the pension plan, according to Lee McLeod, President of the Local.
“I think we reached a reasonable agreement,” said McLeod.
The final agreement will include a wage increase of almost 15% over the four years of the new agreement. There is also a commitment to move the members to a better pension plan by early 2008.
“This round of bargaining was extremely difficult, and we feel we made concessions, but we wanted to get back to work, get back to our clients and the people who need our help, so we reached an agreement we can live with.”
“One of the spin offs from the strike was seeing how much support we had in the community. We really appreciated all the encouragement we got from the people we work with, foster parents and so many others,” said McLeod.
The workers provide a range of supports that assist families in crisis, in Central Region, an area which includes almost 10% of Manitoba’s population.
The Canadian Union of Public Employees is Canada’s largest union representing more than a half-million women and men. In Manitoba, CUPE represents 24,000 members working in health care facilities, school divisions, municipal services, social services, childcare centres, public utilities, libraries and family emergency services. CUPE represents frontline workers in a number of social service agencies that deal with family crises.
For information, contact:
Lee McLeod, President of Local 2483 at (204) 823-0302; Dennis Lewycky, CUPE Communications at (204) 333-5065