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HARRISON HOT SPRINGS – Working without a contract for the past two years is only the beginning of the woes that have prompted Harrison Hot Springs workers to launch a community campaign that includes ads in the local newspaper urging neighbours, friends and supporters to tell Mayor and Council that “Village workers deserve Respect.” The first ad in a series begins today in the Agassiz-Harrison Observer.

“It has reached a point where every village worker has had enough,” says Louise Piper, CUPE 458 President. “Village management have just pushed these workers too far – nobody deserves to work under the unjust working conditions these members face everyday.”

Piper is referring to what village workers complain is unfair treatment, unjust disciplines and harassment. The workers are further concerned that not a single workplace concern (of which there are currently 30 outstanding) has been resolved by management without involving a paid third party, wasting taxpayer’s money.

“Management’s unfair treatment of this workforce is not only hurting this workforce, but it is costing the public and damaging productivity,” says Piper. “The lack of respect from management is extended from the workplace to the bargaining table,” says Piper. “They have refused to make progress towards achieving a contract.”

In bargaining, the Village of Harrison Hot Springs demanded 37 concessions from these 11 workers. One of those concessions is forced overtime. The workers complain that they are already carrying the load of a population that has grown three times bigger, with a workforce increase of only one worker. The answer, they say, is more jobs – not forced overtime.

The Village workers are urging the public and supporters to tell the Mayor and Council to:

Say “no” to forced overtime and “yes” to creating more local jobs.

Show village workers respect on the job and at the bargaining table.

Negotiate a fair contract for village workers now!

The public is further encouraged to show their support by placing a static-cling decal or removable stick bumper sticker on their vehicle that says “Village workers deserve Respect.” Anyone interested in getting one can contact Louise Piper at (604)792-4588 or president458@shaw.ca

CUPE 458 represents the 11 village workers who provide vital public services like water and wastewater operation, clerical work, beach maintenance, gardening and garbage pick-up for the resort community of the Village of Harrison Hot Springs.

It also represents the municipal workers of the District of Kent, District of Hope, Hope Recreation, Fraser Valley Regional District, Cultus Lake Parks Board, and the City of Chilliwack.

For more information, please visit CUPE Local 458 website: www.458.cupe.ca


Louise Piper, CUPE 458 President, (604)792-4588, c: (604)703-8458Diane Kalen, CUPE National Communications Representative, (604)291-1940