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ST. CATHARINES, Ont. Keeping St. Catharines new Sportsplex facility maintenance in public hands will provide taxpayers with higher quality service, greater accountability, and better value for the community, said the union representing over 260 municipal outside workers.

Weve met with city management to discuss an internal solution, said Sean Soper, spokesperson for Local 150 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE). While we are waiting for the final recommendation from management to city council, we are quite encouraged by the positive dialogue we had with them about finding an in-house solution.

The City of St. Catharines issued a request for proposals for maintenance of the new Sportsplex and received two bids from private companies. Senior staff will soon make a recommendation to council on whether to contract out maintenance or keep operations in-house. Local 150 members, who currently maintain ice rinks in four of the five city-owned arenas, mounted a public campaign to stop the privatization of maintenance in the new facility.

We are dedicated workers and are perfectly qualified to service the new arena, said Soper. In fact, we received tremendous public support during our campaign, including many letters recognizing our service and dedication. We made a strong case to management about the importance of keeping the services public, and we are hopeful they now understand that an internal solution makes the most sense.

For further information, please contact:

Sean Soper, Spokesperson for CUPE Local 150, 905-688-5601 ext. 2161, 905-680-1306
Frank Hilton, CUPE National Rep., 905-641-3051
James Chai, CUPE Communications, 416-292-3999