Warning message

Please note that this page is from our archives. There may be more up-to-date content about this topic on our website. Use our search engine to find out.
WINNIPEG – Support workers in the Sunrise School Division (formerly Agassiz School Division) may be the first to test the implications of the province’s school amalgamations.

The 200 members of CUPE Local 1618 have voted to strike if contract negotiations cannot resolve major issues facing them due to the amalgamations. “We’ve had a number of meetings, but the employer is just not trying to find solutions to what concerns the members,” said Steve Edwards, CUPE Representative.

The members who provide custodial, maintenance, bus and teaching assistance support to the School Division have been without a contract since December 2002.

Issues that have not been resolved are largely monetary. The amalgamation has put together workers who are doing similar work, but receive very different salaries. While the employer has agreed to some wage increases, these do not help equalize salaries across the Division.

“For example, we want to improve pension benefits for the members, but the employer is resisting any change,” said Edwards.

“The trustees voted themselves an increase of over 200% in their annual honoraria, but they won’t equalize wage differences forced on us by amalgamation,” said Jackie Hampshire, President of the CUPE Local.

The Union has applied for conciliation to resolve the impasse. If progress is not made in negotiations, the workers will be in a strike position immediately after the vote.

- 30 -

For information, contact:
Jackie Hampshire, President of CUPE Local 1618 –
Phone: (204) 345-8665
Steve Edwards, National Representative –
Phone: 942-0343, ext. 212