Members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees, CUPE 1615 at Memorial University have ratified a new four-year collective agreement.

The agreement includes improvements to language, pay, and benefits for workers. All classifications will receive an 8% wage increase over four years in addition to a one-time prorated $2000 retention bonus. In addition, CUPE 1615 was also able to reduce the thirty-six-step wage scale to a nineteen-step scale that sees the lowest steps eliminated and thus increasing the salary floor and secure a brand-new salary supplement benefit for those on parental leave.

“Over several months, our team negotiated diligently on behalf of CUPE 1615 members. The employer heard our concerns and engaged with the Administration and the Board of Regents to get several significant improvements for our members,” said CUPE 1615 president Bill Kavanagh. “I am happy the membership came together to ratify this deal. We are proud that folks on the lowest pay scales will now get significantly more, that we have the introduction of parental leave top-up, and that we are seeing the establishment of family violence leave.”

“CUPE 1615 members should be proud of what they have accomplished at the bargaining table,” said CUPE Newfoundland and Labrador president Sherry Hillier. “It’s great to see advancements that support new members while maintaining existing benefits earned in previous rounds of bargaining.”

CUPE 1615 represents more than 700 administrative, instructional, technical, and technical support employees at the St. John’s, Corner Brook, and Labrador campuses of Memorial University.