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BIGGAR: The union representing striking education workers in the Biggar Public School Division will return to the bargaining table tonight to resume negotiations.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees contacted the school division on April 19 after members of CUPE Local 2128 voted 80% to overwhelmingly reject the employers last offer, which contained numerous concessions. The Division Board relied on a seldom used provision of the Trade Union Act to trigger a vote on their final offer.

Negotiations will resume with the help of mediator Doug Forseth from the Department of Labour.

The 46 teaching and library assistants, secretaries and caretakers began job action on February 4. The school employees work in the communities of Biggar, Cando, Sonningdale, Handel, Landis and three Hutterite colonies.

Were hopeful well be able to achieve a fair and equitable agreement, said union spokesperson Penny McCallum. But the strong rejection of the employers offer sends a clear message that our members will not accept attacks on seniority, our job security and other takeaways to our collective agreement.

The school support workers plan to maintain their picket lines until an agreement is reached.

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For further information call Penny McCallum at the CUPE Strike Headquarters in Biggar at 948-3860