Overwhelming support shown in strike vote for bargaining priorities.
Halifax (05 Aug. 2015) — Employees at Sherbrooke Village, members of the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU/NUPGE) have voted 85 per cent in favour of strike action in support of their bargaining committee. The employer has been dragging out negotiations, due to a pension issue, for over three years.
Three years and counting and no collective agreement
“The membership is extremely frustrated and disappointed,” says Joan Jessome, NSGEU President. “This strike vote shows their overwhelming support for their bargaining committee and their determination to reach a fair agreement soon.”
At a meeting on August 4, 51 out of 60 members in attendance voted to strike.
Wages are the main outstanding issue in bargaining
“Employees at Sherbrooke Village are already making less than other employees who do similar work at other museums in the province,” says Jessome. “They are asking for a fair wage increase so they do not fall even further behind.”
NSGEU/NUPGE and the employer are also currently working to solve an underfunded pension plan for full-time employees as a separate issue. The vast majority of employees at Sherbrooke Village are part-time and do not belong to the pension plan.
“The pension issue should not be used as an excuse to stall negotiations,” says Jessome.
Discussions will continue with the assistance of a conciliation officer at the end of August
A conciliation officer has been appointed and conciliation dates are being scheduled for the end of August.
There are 71 members of Local 50 who work at Sherbrooke Village as craftspeople, historical interpreters, marketing and promotions, administrators, security, and maintenance workers.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 360,000 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