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Less than one month after voting to join the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) support staff at Fort McMurray Catholic Schools have an agreement with their employer.

Employees voted 97 per cent in favour of the deal which provides for an arbitration process to settle grievances, dues deduction for the union, and the confirmation of 4.53 per cent wage increases previously agreed to.

CUPE Alberta President Marle Roberts explained that CUPE inherited an agreement from the old staff association that runs until 2012. However, the parties were able to agree to some changes.

An important part of any contract is having a way to settle disputes – and this agreement provides that,” said Roberts. “We’ve taken an important first step in developing a new relationship between the school district and its support staff.”