Community Living and General Service workers ratify agreement – Aboriginal Services ratification vote ongoing.
Vancouver (23 April 2013) – Community social service workers in British Columbia have voted in favour of a two-year contract that provides a wage increase while protecting health and welfare benefits.
Contract now in effect
Community Living workers ratified the agreement by 71 per cent and the General Services workers rafitied by 84 per cent. The weighted average ratification vote for both sectors was 76 per cent. The Community Social Services Employers Association has also ratified the Community Living Services and General Services collective agreements. Both collective agreements are now in effect.
Highlights of the new agreements include:
- a wage increase for all employees
- 1.5 per cent on April 1, 2013
- 1.5 per cent on January 1, 2014
- an extra one per cent wage increase for all step 1 employees on April 1, 2013 and
- a labour market adjustment review for all General Service and Community Living classifications.
The agreement covers workers that support adults with developmental disabilities, youth-at-risk, infant and child development, women services, substance addictions, First Nations, and employment services, among others.
“Community social service workers have voted in favour of an improved contract, but it took three months of rotating strike action to get a deal,” said Darryl Walker, President of the B.C. Government and Service Employees Union (BCGEU/NUPGE).
In late January 2013, nearly 3,400 community living workers went on strike. The following week, nearly 500 family service workers were picketing. Rotating strike action first started in October 2012 and impacted communities across the province.
“We continue to believe that the provincial government must reinvest in community living and other critical services that support vulnerable families across British Columbia and value the work of our caring professionals,” said Patsy Harmston, Community Social Services Bargaining Association Chair.
There are 15,000 unionized community social service workers in British Columbia, and two-thirds of them work in community living supporting adults with developmental disabilities.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE