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Through a mediated process and with the assistance of retired Justice William Vancise, Q.C., Saskatchewan Legal Aid and CUPE Local 1949 have reached an agreement about issues in the Saskatoon Area Office.
CUPE Local 1949 filed an unfair labour practice claim with the Labour Relations Board after Legal Aid management moved to contract out duty counsel work to the private bar and to lay off several Legal Aid employees. Upon the resolution of this matter, the union is withdrawing its unfair labour practice.
The agreement, which was signed on November 22, 2018, resolves the claim by bringing some duty counsel and support work back in-house and creating mechanisms for reviewing issues.
“This agreement is a positive move for Legal Aid Saskatchewan and will increase staffing levels at the Saskatoon office, says Wanda Towstego, co-president of CUPE Local 1949. “We look forward to providing services to our clients and appreciate the recognition that a staff based system works best.”
University of Regina food service workers in the Chartwells bargaining unit of CUPE Local 5791 are being confronted with harmful management decisions that erode their livelihoods and working conditions. These include: the reduction of working hours, staff cuts, layoff notices sent to all workers over the November class break, lack of attention to health and safety in the workplace, and the presence of managers doing work of the bargaining unit.
Chartwells is part of Compass, a multi-billion-dollar multinational corporation. Tell Chartwells to address the issues above and help to restore morale in the workplace by providing satisfactory hours of work and improved working conditions.
CUPE members and staff delivered solidarity to the strike lines of postal workers in Regina today by donating one thousand dollars and joining the picket line to show support. Members of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers have been on rotating strikes since October 22, 2018. Rotating strike locations in Saskatchewan were announced in Moose Jaw, Saskatoon and Weyburn locals earlier this week, and today in Regina.
“CUPE members across Saskatchewan are with you in the fight for fairness,” said Judy Henley, Secretary-Treasurer of CUPE Saskatchewan. “We urge Canada Post to return to the bargaining table and meaningfully address the needs of postal workers for improved job security, working conditions, service expansion and equality,” said Henley.
CUPW has been negotiating collective agreements with Canada Post for almost a year for the Urban Postal Operations and Rural and Suburban Mail Carriers (RSMC) bargaining units.
“CUPE members from across Saskatchewan stand in solidarity with UFCW 1400 Moose Jaw Co-op workers in the fight against two-tier wages and pay inequality,” said Tom Graham, President of CUPE Saskatchewan. “We are all impacted when employers force concessions at the bargaining table instead of bargaining forward for fairness.”
In 2017, workers and residents of Colombia’s principal Pacific port of Buenaventura launched a three-week civic strike that forced the Colombian government to negotiate solutions to the city’s social and human rights crisis. This historic moment and action highlights the many challenges to economic and social justice that remain in Colombia, a country with among the highest poverty and inequality rates in Latin America. While the Colombian government signed peace agreements in the autumn of 2017, violence connected to large landowners and corporate economic interests remain active throughout the country, and privatization, land grabs and massive dislocation of the rural population continue to be commonplace.
Take the opportunity to meet the Buenaventura, Colombian Strike Committee, in a reception hosted by the CUPE Saskatchewan Global Justice Committee.
- When: Thursday, October 25, 2018, from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
- Where: Copper Kettle, 1953 Scarth Street, Regina, SK
When: Thursday, October 25, 2018 at Noon
Where: Rally at the legislature, Regina, SK
RSVP to get on the bus in Regina or request a ride from out of town at: www.WhereDidTheMoneyGo.org
“The Union was adamant throughout bargaining that they would not accept concessions, and we did not back down on that,” said Sherri Blackburn, President of CUPE Local 90. “It is unfortunate that it took until mediation for the Employer to realize that the Union was serious about not accepting the Employer’s concessions.”
(North Battleford) Glaslyn resident Denis Ouellette, President of CUPE Local 4797, has been awarded the CUPE Saskatchewan Education Workers’ Steering Committee activist award.
Ouellette works at the Northwest School Division as a caretaker. He has been a CUPE member for 12 years, and has served as a steward, a member of the executive, and as the president of his local.
Ouellette has participated in four rounds of bargaining and achieved gains for his members each time. He has spent countless hours traveling across the school division and on the phone informing his members and making sure they understood the issues and knew the bargaining committee was there for them.
Based in Swift Current, the SWCS is a non-profit, community-based organization that operates a safe shelter for women and children leaving abusive situations. SWCS also operates a confidential 24-hour help line for anyone needing support and provides outreach support counselling to help women, men and children who are at risk of abuse or need assistance with interpersonal issues.
“The workers at the SWCS provide an indispensable service for the entire southwest corner of Saskatchewan,” says Guy Marsden, CUPE National Organizer. “We are very pleased to welcome these members into our union.”
Marsden says the membership of the new Local, to be identified as CUPE Local 5398, will elect a bargaining committee and executive soon. Work will also begin on developing proposals for a first collective agreement.
Colin Byas, candidate for Secretary-Treasurer of the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour (SFL), has received the endorsement of the Executive Board of CUPE Saskatchewan ahead of elections to be held at the upcoming SFL Convention in Regina on October 24 – 27, 2018, at Queensbury Convention Centre, Evraz Place.
“Colin’s years of experience in the labour movement, his commitment to community involvement, his experience as a union Treasurer and Trustee, and his understanding of labour law and collective agreements make him an ideal candidate for Secretary-Treasurer of the SFL,” said Tom Graham, President of CUPE Saskatchewan.
Colin Byas began his involvement in the labour movement by organizing his workplace as a community housing worker to join a union in 1997. Since then, he has held several elected labour leadership positions including chief shop steward, chair of a bargaining committee, local union president, treasurer of a local union and sector, and a local union trustee. Byas is a proud member of CUPE Local 3761 and works as a staff member in the role of a union representative.