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BURNABY—The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) has released a report (full report below) proving that municipal library workers are underpaid compared to other municipal workers, library workers in other public libraries and in other municipal libraries in the country.

The study by CUPE Research compares wages in eight municipal library systems in the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD) with wages in other public sector libraries in the province—including those at schools, colleges, and universities—and across Canada.

The study shows that librarians in the GVRD make $7.00 per hour less than librarians at the Toronto Public Library, who have received pay equity adjustments. Senior librarians at the GVRD receive between $3.00 and $10.00 per hour less than senior librarians in academic libraries. Similar wage discrepancies exist in non-librarian positions. A summary (below) of the report is also available.

CUPE maintains that the discrepancies revealed by the report are a pay equity issue and a matter of wage discrimination against female workers. Municipal library workers have not received any pay equity adjustments over the last 20 years. Other library workers have received adjustments.

The pay equity issue affects library workers throughout the province. In Greater Victoria, public library workers represented by CUPE 410 recently launched their own “Overdue” campaign to achieve pay equity with other municipal workers in the Capital Region.

Their struggle is now in its second decade, with the City of Victoria failing to follow through on a 1996 promise to deliver pay equity for the sector. Greater Victoria residents have been encouraged to visit the CUPE 410 campaign website www.overduepromise.ca, to urge politicians to heed that promise.