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Proposed cuts to cleaning staff at the Canadian Rockies School Division may lead to increased absences by students as schools and equipment will not be maintained and cleaned up to current standards.

That was the assessment of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 37, representing custodial and cleaning staff in the district.

Every parent has had to deal with their kids coming home with colds and flus they picked up at school,” said union representative Tony Miotti. “Imagine how much worse that will be without desks, computers and other equipment getting regularly cleaned.”

Miotti said the District is reducing the hours of work by as much as 50 per cent for some cleaners.  CUPE is putting the blame on the provincial government.

The MLA for this area, Janis Tarchuk, has some explaining to do,” said Miotti.  “The Conservative vision for schools seems to be buildings devoid of staff.”