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Biggar: The CUPE negotiating committee for the striking education workers in the Biggar Public School Division will return to the bargaining table on Monday.

The employer contacted CUPE today to request that both parties resume negotiations. CUPE has called for the assistance of Doug Forseth, Executive Director of Conciliation Services with the Department of Labour. The employer has agreed.

The 46 teaching and library assistants, secretaries and caretakers, members of CUPE Local 2128, began job action on Monday in response to the employers final offer which took away seniority rights and other important benefits. The school employees work in the communities of Biggar, Cando, Sonningdale, Handel, Landis and three Hutterite colonies.

This strike is not about wages, explains union spokesperson Bea Devenny, a teaching assistant in Biggar. Its about the need to negotiate an agreement that treats employees with dignity and respect.

Ms. Devenny says members are pleased negotiations will resume on Monday. And were very hopeful well be able to achieve a fair agreement, one that builds on our previous contract.

The school support workers plan to maintain their picket lines until an agreement is reached.

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For more information call Bea Devenny or Penny McCallum at the CUPE Strike Headquarters in Biggar at 948-3860