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HAPPY VALLEY-GOOSE BAYCUPE municipal workers with the Town of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador have been locked out by their employer.

CUPE National Representative Ed White says, “43 members of Local 2019 were locked out this morning in a move that has obviously originated in the mayor’s office. With this lockout, Mayor Jamie Snook has now reneged on a commitment he made just before Christmas that they would not lock out their employees.”

The workers are fighting an attack on their Defined Benefit (DB) pension plan. In a 96% strike vote, they rejected the Town’s demand for a two-tiered pension plan which would see all new hires move to a dramatically inferior Defined Contribution (DC) plan.

Says White, “To add insult to injury, the mayor and town council recently gave themselves whopping salary increases, doubling their annual income for what amount to part-time jobs.”

CUPE says it has put forward a proposal on the outstanding pension issue that helps mitigate future risk to the Town. It says the pension plan is being funded at a healthy 109% on a ‘going concern’ basis.