GRAND FORKS – The Grand Forks Public Library Board has ratified recommendations for a new three-year collective agreement with CUPE 2254 members. The five unionized library workers voted unanimously to ratify the recommendations from provincial mediator Mark Atkinson on Saturday.
CUPE national servicing representives Lee-Anne Halifax and Rob Hewitt report that a Library Board representative notified them Thursday morning that the Board had ratified the agreement at an in-camera meeting Wednesday night.
The workers were locked out January 20 and returned to work two months ago under their existing contract after the Board agreed to resume mediation. Bargaining committee member Leanne Strang said the members are glad to have the dispute resolved – their first in 15 years of a unionized workplace at the library.
The recommendations are for a three-year contract with wage increases of two, two-and-a-half and three per cent, respectively. The employer’s share of benefit payments increases to 75 per cent from 50 per cent. Seniority rights and job description language are protected and Atkinson wants a joint committee formed to set personal and sexual harassment policy and procedures with the help of CUPE national equality representative Conni Kilfoil.
Halifax also reported that two days of contract negotiations between the Castlegar public library and CUPE 2262 start today.
Contact: Murray Bush, Communications, 604-291-1940