City of Kamloops BC workers, represented by CUPE 900, have voted 96.2 per cent in favour of a new 5-year collective agreement. The new contract includes wage adjustments of 2.5 per cent in the first year, 2.25 per cent in the second year and 2 per cent in each of the remaining years of the agreement.

“Our members were very clear that the city needed to come forward with respectful wage increases to meet affordability challenges experienced by city workers,” said CUPE 900 President Carmen Sullivan. “Each year that inflation is higher than our wage adjustments is a year in which our families have a harder time making ends meet.”

According to a BC government report, year-over-year inflation in the province was 2.7 per cent as of April 2019. Statistics Canada reporting for the country shows that for the 12-months ending April 2019, BC led the way on inflation and was first among provinces with a rate of 0.7 per cent higher than the national average. 

“Both the union and the city have worked collaboratively for an agreement that is fair to workers, is in line with inflation, and protects the services citizens count on,” said Sullivan. “This agreement builds on improved cooperation between the parties, which this year helped realize savings by keeping work in-house.”

In addition to wage adjustments, the new collective agreement includes a number of wording changes to clarify terms and provisions that will assist both parties in better interpreting the agreement. These changes will produce more efficient operations by reducing costs related to disagreements and disputes between the parties.

“We want to be partners in making the City of Kamloops the best it can be,” said Sullivan. “Our members are proud to live and work in Kamloops and know that when we improve the services we deliver, the whole community benefits.”

CUPE 900 represents more than 850 members working in municipal and municipally funded services across the Thompson-Nicola region, including 645 members working for the City of Kamloops. The new collective agreement takes effect as of January 1, 2019 and replaces the past agreement that ran between 2014 and 2018.