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Montra006c – The union and management have finally found a modus vivendi to deal with the difficulties caused by the support employees’ strike at the Centre hospitalier universitaire vtrinaire (CHUV) in Saint-Hyacinthe, attached to Universit 0064e Montra006c (UdeM). While yesterday evening, discussions had still not resulted in an agreement between the parties on how to ensure essential care for the animals, this morning we learned that the CHUV management has finally accepted the union’s proposal.

Michel Ducharme, president of CUPE’s local union 1244, explained that “the union proposal allows the CHUV to deal with emergencies.” He emphasized that “with some one hundred professors and other veterinary specialists, the CHUV has all the expertise it needs to care for the animals during the strike.” He also noted that “the union has agreed it will not submit complaints in regard to provisions of the Labour Code concerning strike breakers, even though the professors and other specialists are employees.” In addition to the latter, 20 management employees will also be legally permitted to assume the striking employees’ duties to take care of the animals.

Bargaining to Resume Tomorrow

At the specific request of the conciliator appointed by Labour minister Suzanne Thr0069en, negotiations between the UdeM management and the union will resume tomorrow morning. This will mark the first round of bargaining since the general strike was called on Friday of last week, since discussions over the past few days have focused exclusively on the union’s pressure tactics.

Union representatives indicated that, between now and the weekend, they intend to organize a massive demonstration to support their claims.

Local 1244 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE-FTQ) represents close to 2000 support employees at the UdeM, 80% of whom are women. CUPE also represents come 15,000 members in the education sector, with 8000, mostly support staff, employed by Qub0065c universities. Also active in other sectors of activity including communications, municipalities, health and social services, hydroelectricity, provincial corporations and public organizations, and urban and air transportation, CUPE has close to 100,000 members, making it the largest FTQ affiliate.