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OSHAWA, Ont. – Ajax-Pickering transit workers, represented by the Canadian Union of Public Employees, CUPE Local 111, have reached a new collective agreement with improvements in many areas. By the end of the year, the 135 workers will have a total wage increase of 6.9% for 2005.

This contract puts us in a good position as we head into a merger with other transit workers in the new Durham Region Transit system that kicks-off in January 2006,” said Al Luce, chair of the negotiating committee for CUPE 111. Yesterday the workers voted 96 per cent in favour of the new contract that includes improvements in wages, improvements in benefits, improved successor rights, seniority for casual employees, Monday to Friday scheduling for full-time employees, improved shift sign-up language, increases in vacation, bereavement leave, shift premiums, tool allowances, a new premium for driver trainers, better layoff protection, improved compensation for missed overtime, and many other improvements.

Our negotiating team worked hard to reach this agreement on behalf of our members at Ajax-Pickering Transit,” said Luce. “These contract improvements not only benefit our members, but all area residents as we move forward, offering quality transit services that build strong communities.”

For further information, please contact:

Linda Newman, CUPE National Representative, (905) 422-4760, (905) 706-9786 (cell)

Al Luce, CUPE 111 Executive, (905) 839-5844

Robert Lamoureux, CUPE Communications, (416) 292-3999