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HALIFAX Workers with the Halifax Regional School Board were seeing red after learning the board is still processing applications from replacement workers.

The union representing 700 education program assistants, library technicians and student support workers was told late last Friday that the board had asked RJF Healthcare, a private employment agency, to cancel a job fair scheduled for March 14. The job fair was intended to recruit replacement workers in the event of a strike.

The move came after two days of conciliation between the board and Local 108 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

But the union learned today that despite assurances of good faith from the board, plans for three other job fairs are going ahead and that applications will be processed if prospective replacement workers show up.

Larry Power, CUPE National Representative and chief negotiator for the union says, This latest move has incensed our members. The trust level with the HRSB is at an all time low.

As far as CUPE 108 knew, the Sunday job fair was the last one scheduled. This move shows the HRSB is more interested in causing a work stoppage than avoiding one. If the employer wants to restore any semblance of good faith, we are demanding the job fairs be cancelled along with the $40,000 contract with RJF Healthcare, says Power.

On March 13, ads appeared in the Chronicle Herald seeking workers for a pilot project in the Halifax Regional Municipality. Without revealing that the jobs were to replace workers in the event of a strike, a job fair was advertised for March 17, beginning at 10:00 a.m. at the offices of RJF Healthcare on Spring Garden Road. Two more job fairs are set for next week.

What was proposed on Friday as a show of good faith by the employer has turned into a show of bad faith, says Power.

For further information, contact:
Larry Power
National Representative
(902) 454-6369 (o)