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FREDERICTON A tentative collective agreement was reached early this morning between the provincial government and the New Brunswick Council of Hospital Unions (CUPE 1252), representing more than 6,500 support workers in the hospital system.

A tentative agreement was able to be worked out over the weekend thanks to good faith bargaining by both negotiating teams, said David Rouse, President of the NB Council of Hospital Unions.

Members of CUPE 1252 have been on strike in the Moncton area since Sept. 27. These employees will be returning to work as soon as possible on Tuesday and regular services will resume within the next week. Both parties recommend ratification of the terms of the tentative agreement. The ratification vote will take place Tuesday, Oct. 19.

Both the Province and the union have agreed to withhold details of the tentative agreement pending a ratification vote by union members. The previous collective agreement expired June 30, 2003.