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Kamloops, BC - Don’t cut the school custodians! That was the message from School District 73 trustees and district parent advisory council leaders who met with CUPE BC President, Barry O’Neill here yesterday.

’Some people may think that custodians are an easy budget cut,’ O’Neill said. ’But that would be a mistake. Trustees are discussing how to deal with a $3-5 million deficit created by the Campbell Liberals’ demand for huge cuts.

’These are the first people you see when you got to our schools,’ DPAC President Dale Bass told O’Neill. ’They know all our children. They look out for them. They do a lot more than keep our schools clean and healthy.’

’Our schools are spotless because of our custodians,’ trustee Denise Harper told the CUPE provincial leader. ’And their job ismore difficult in our district because many of our schools are older.’

Earlier, O’Neill visited school bus drivers, mechanics and other workers. ’People don’t know what I do,’ said one. ’I take very seriously my responsibility to keep these buses running safely for our kids.’

O’Neill’s message to school trustees and parents: ’Don’t abandon your community to jump on the Liberal cuts bandwagon. Fight them…for the sake of all our children. Fight the cuts!’

The CUPE leader is on a province-wide tour to promote CUPE’s ’Strong Communities’ campaign as part of the fight to save B.C. communities from Liberal attacks. He tours in the Kootenays next.


Ron Verzuh, CUPE Communications. 604-785-1422