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VICTORIA About 240 library workers have rejected the latest employer offer and are being pushed to the brink of a strike because negotiators for municipal councils are refusing to honour a promise of pay equity.

Theyve given it to workers in the four main municipalities, said Heather Murch, president or CUPE Local 410. And they promised it to us back in 1992. But they seem content for libraries to remain a female job ghetto.

The workers 90 per cent of them female say pay equity is long overdue and that they are prepared to take strike action to get it.

The wage gap between us and other municipal workers doing comparable work is huge, Murch said, adding that the employers negotiator refuses to address the issue.

The municipalities have the money to honour their pay equity promise, she added. But they are being let off the hook.

Murch says her members do not want to strike in September. They are aware that is a busy time of year and that plans are under way to expand service to central Saanich.

But we have simply reached an impasse in bargaining that can only be resolved by councils living up to their promise, she said.


Contact: Heather Murch, CUPE Local 410 President, 475-6100.