Friday April 25, 2014

SD73 support workers ratify contract

Kamloops-Thompson school trustees are expected to ratify Monday a new contract that will give support workers a 3.5 per cent wage increase.

CUPE Local 3500 president John Hall said union members voted 81 per cent in favour of the deal on Saturday.

Hall said the pay raise is not retroactive to the start of the contract, which is 2012. Union members do receive a post factum one-per-cent raise as of July 1 of this year.

Another two-per-cent increase begins Feb. 1 and the last .5 per cent commences May 1, he said.

"It's a back-ended deal," said Hall. "This is a good, strong mandate."

A lot of local issues were also addressed, including improvements to the union's family illness clause and increased stipends for first aid training.

The union bargaining committee met several times with district negotiators since a provincial framework agreement was settled in late September. Hall hopes the approval of trustees at a meeting Monday will bring the long process to a close.

However, with the contract ending in June, Hall said he expects to be back at the bargaining table within six months.

"We're in for another round," said Hall.

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