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STURGEON FALLS, Ont. – Forty-four outside workers in Sturgeon Falls are calling on the Municipality of West Nipissing to give real contract talks a chance at the bargaining table.

Without that chance the municipality could be experiencing labour strife as soon as December 9, 2007. To date, the Sturgeon Falls administration has proposed many concessions, and allowed very few discussions to take place.

Unrestricted contracting-out is a major element of the city’s plan – a plan that would undermine the delivery of public services and scrap decent jobs while diverting taxpayers’ money to private profits and eliminating accountability from our elected municipal government by delegating it to the private sector.

With the winter starting, Sturgeon Falls has no need for a labour dispute that would divide the community and disrupt services,” says Fran Ludwick, CUPE National Servicing Representative. “All these workers are asking for at this point is a chance to negotiate a fair deal.”

Sturgeon Falls’ outside workers have a history of pride when it comes to providing services to their own community. They will not let their jobs go to contractors who want to make profits out of what should be public services.

The ball is squarely in the administration’s court,” says Ludwick, “These workers will not let their jobs go to contractors who see the delivery of services as a business opportunity to make company profits.”

Sturgeon Falls’ outside workers have been without a contract since December 31, 2006. They are represented by CUPE local 535. Workers and management had been in conciliation until Sturgeon Falls administration ended conciliation on November 15, setting the deadline for a strike or a lockout as early as midnight, December 9.

For further information, contact:

Fran Ludwick, CUPE National Representative, 705-358-0663
Sébastien Goulet, CUPE Communications, 613-808-0675