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Twenty-two CUPE members who work as educators at Seven Oaks day care in Winnipeg have approved a first contract that gives them wage increases of between 9 to 12.5 per cent.

It took some time to work out this deal but it’s a great settlement,” says CUPE representative Murray Craddock.

The one-year agreement is retroactive to July of last year. The workers, all women, chose CUPE eighteen months ago when they voted to join CUPE Local 1543, which covers eight child care workplaces.

Local president Lori Schroen says contracts such as this one send an important message.

We’re educating and caring for society’s most valuable asset – our children. Yet we’re paid less than meter readers or truck drivers,” says Schroen. “We’re skilled, trained professionals and we should be paid what our work is worth.”