Unionized workers committed to reaching a settlement, says president

Sherry Martell
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TRURO - The president of CUPE Nova Scotia is cautiously optimistic a settlement can be reached in time to avert strike action.
Contract talks are set to resume today at 10 a.m. in Truro in an effort to resolve outstanding issues.
"Our acute care negotiating team will sit down with hospital employers tomorrow for the first time since November, 2009 and that has to be a good sign," said Danny Cavanagh, CUPE Nova Scotia president.
"We have been saying for several days now that the only place this dispute is going to get settled is at the bargaining table and now that is finally happening."
He said the union has also been informed the school board negotiating group will resume its contract talks on
Sunday.
"Our bargaining objectives remain the same - a negotiated settlement for both groups of workers," said Cavanagh. "I want to assure Nova Scotians that CUPE is committed to reaching a negotiated settlement and averting a strike."
If an agreement is not reached by 6 a.m., Monday, about 480 Colchester East Hants Health Authority health-care support workers and about 600 Chignecto-Central Regional School Board employees will walk off the
job.
So far, the province has offered a four-year contract with 2.9 per cent hikes in the first two years and one per cent for each of the remaining two years.
Employees want a three-year contract with 2.9 per cent increases each year.
Their contract expired on March 31, 2007.

smartell@trurodaily.com

Organizations: CUPE Nova Scotia, Colchester East Hants Health Authority, Central Regional School Board

Geographic location: TRURO, Nova Scotians, Chignecto

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Recent comments

  • Sean
    March 01, 2010 - 14:40

    I dont get why Cupe even threatens to go on strike.....Everyone knows when it comes down to the last couple of days the strikes going to be called off....WHY CREATE PUBLIC PANIC FOR NO REASON!!!!!!!!

  • danielle sawada
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    I was absolutely horrified this morning to read that CUPE is planning on picketing outside the schools in the event of a strike. I support equal pay for equal work. I do. But I do NOT support my children having to cross picket lines in order to get an education. The students cannot do anything to change the situation. Not one of them is old enough to vote. It is enough of a MAJOR inconvenience that the services are being revoked during the strike. We have sent our troops into Afghanistan where they are dying in order to ensure access to education for everyone. I think CUPE should strongly reconsider this action and find another way to voice their discontent.

  • Aurora
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Picketing outside of a school is also a safety issue. We're talking hundreds of vehicles needing to access small parking lots and driveways at schools (at the same time in the morning and afternoon mind you) and this is enough for parents to worry about -- let alone the picket line and extra bodies. I hope all schools enforce their policy of not allowing people other than students and family members on school property during school hours. Danielle, I agree with your comments completely. It is not appropriate to ask a child to cross a picket line to get an education. Parents and children have zero control over CUPE Nova Scotia and the Chignecto-Central Regional School Board and the province. Picketing at our schools will do nothing for the cause.

  • Jeff
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    CUPE should not picket anywhere near the schools. They have a dispute and that is fair enough but picketing is simply inapropriate in this instance.
    I have always felt that picketing borders on bullying, and since the dispute is widely known it is really unnecessary.
    So heads up to CUPE this is a P.R. issue and I hope that the CUPE members make the right choice.

  • Flogger
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Welcome to socialism 101. Unions have seen their day and they proved their point long ago in history. Jeff Benetti uses the right word: 'bullying'. Stay the h*ll away from our schools!!!!

  • Seriously
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Really, if you think your kids are in danger than don't send them! Doesn't take a grade 12 diploma to figure that one out!!

  • Doug
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Not to worry, there won't be a strike. The headline will read Strike averted after marathon bargaining session ends at 3am