Striking Essex County Library workers will return to the bargaining table with the Essex Library Board on Wednesday, February 8. The union, representing the striking workers, called the library board back to the table, marking the first negotiations between the two sides since November 24, 2016.

A group of workers holding picket signsLori Wightman, spokesperson for Local 2974 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE 2974), says, “the union believes that public services are essential and the loss of library services for over eight months has left a void in our community. Both parties involved need to find a way to end this strike.”

The most recent final offer from the employer was overwhelmingly rejected by the union in an employer-supervised vote on December 13, 2016. “We hope that the library board is coming to the table to find a deal,” says Wightman, “we will continue, as we always have, to be open and flexible to different proposals. We have stayed united this long because we believe – and so does the community – that we can get a fair deal.”