CUPE 882 is pleased to announce they have confirmed a bargaining date with the City of Prince Albert for Friday, November 24 with an additional date set for the following week.
“There must have been some miscommunication on the city’s side as the union was never asked for a meeting on Tuesday,” said Cara Stelmaschuk, Vice-President of CUPE 882. “But we are heartened to see that the city is finally feeling a sense of urgency to resolve this, and we are glad we have a bargaining date secured.”
The union began job action on August 10, with a full withdrawal of services on September 11. This Friday will be the third bargaining date since June 26.
“Our union is ready to reach a deal. We hope that the city comes prepared to negotiate in good faith to reach a tentative agreement that works for both parties,” added Stelmaschuk.
CUPE 882 wants to thank the residents of Prince Albert, and the broader arts community for their ongoing support and solidarity.
After the recent reversal on the decision to close the Regina Lutheran Home, CUPE is calling on the provincial government to stop treating Saskatchewan seniors like an afterthought and create a long-term plan for long-term care.
“The closure of Regina Lutheran Home should never have been on the table in the first place,” said Bashir Jalloh, president of CUPE 5430. “We welcome this reversal, but in reality, this mess is just the latest example of this government’s short-sighted and chaotic approach to long-term care.”
On November 20, Transgender Day of Remembrance, we honour the memories and mourn the loss of all transgender, two-spirit, non-binary and gender non-conforming people who were victims of violence, hatred and discrimination. Let’s remember and work for change to end all forms of transphobic violence and discrimination in the workplace, at home, and in the community. #transdayofrememberance
Trans Day of Remembrance serves as a stark reminder of how much work we still must do – and better allies we all can be – to make our communities and workplaces safer and more inclusive.
We all have a role in supporting gender diversity and inclusion.
Learn more with links to the following resources:
While City Council started budget deliberations by giving themselves a compensation increase, the unions representing inside and outside workers at the City of Prince Albert stand united to demand fair wages that reflect their dedication to the well-being and prosperity of our community.
“Budgets are about choices. This council is choosing to give themselves wage increases because of “increased workload” but are refusing to negotiate in good faith with their own employees,” said Cara Stelmaschuk, Vice-President of CUPE 882, the union representing inside workers at the city. “City workers are the heartbeat of Prince Albert, diligently providing vital services that ensure the smooth functioning of our city. From maintaining public spaces to ensuring public safety, these workers are the true pillars upon which our community stands.”
According to media reports, the city is projecting to bring in over $82 million in revenue for 2024 and is looking to spend over $77 million. PA Now reports that the difference between the projected revenue and projected expenditures is about $5.1 million – which “means the city could add to the budget without the risk of dealing with a deficit.”
“The cost of living continues to rise, and our members, who give their all to keep Prince Albert thriving, deserve compensation that aligns with their tireless efforts,” said Leslie Mourot Bartley, President of CUPE 160, the union representing outside workers. “Our demand for a fair wage increase is not just about numbers on a paycheque. It’s about recognition of our tireless efforts, commitment, and the indispensable services we provide. We are not asking for the moon; we are asking for a modest increase that reflects the value we bring to the City of Prince Albert.”
Today, workers from Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) represented by CUPE, SEIU-West, and SGEU gathered at the legislature to send a simple message to the Minister of Social Services and former Saskatchewan Roughrider Gene Makowsky: Don’t fumble the ball on providing multi-year funding for Saskatchewan CBOs.
“Saskatchewan CBOs provide vital services to some of Saskatchewan’s most vulnerable citizens,” said Judy Henley, president of CUPE Saskatchewan. “After decades of underfunding, it’s past time for our government to step up. Saskatchewan CBOs have long been lobbying for stability only to be let down by this government at every turn. It’s time for Minister Makowsky to get his head in the game and provide stable, multi-year funding for our CBO sector.”
CBO workers care for people living with disabilities, respond to domestic violence calls, engage in suicide intervention, provide emergency child care, deliver mental health and addictions services, help people find employment, and more. For the past decade, the Saskatchewan government has provided inconsistent and unreliable funding for the CBO sector. For just as long, Saskatchewan unions have been calling on the government to provide multi-year funding for CBOs. A lack of stable, long-term funding has left CBOs in a constant state of uncertainty and as a result, they have been unable to provide wages that keep up with inflation for frontline workers, and struggle with recruitment and retention of staff.
November 6 is CBO Workers’ Appreciation Day, recognizing and celebrating the vital role of Community-Based Organizations (CBO) workers in Saskatchewan. CBO workers are at the heart of a network of care and supportive services for Saskatchewan people and the most vulnerable in our communities.
CUPE members in over 30 CBO sector local unions in communities across Saskatchewan care for the most vulnerable in group homes and programs providing support for employment and independent living for people living with disabilities. CBO workers provide child care and early learning, and CBO workers provide support and emergency shelter for victims of interpersonal violence, crisis intervention services, mental health support, addictions treatment, support for people experiencing homelessness, and much more.
This week, CUPE Saskatchewan submitted its recommendations to the provincial government as they review the Employment Standards Provisions of the Saskatchewan Employment Act. Saskatchewan currently lags behind many other jurisdictions with its minimum wage, job-protected leaves, and other important minimum standards. CUPE is urging the review to improve workers’ rights and protections for a fairer economy.
“It’s been over a decade since the government last reviewed these provisions, and so much has changed in workplaces since the last review in 2012,” said Judy Henley, president of CUPE Saskatchewan. “From the emergence of gig work and increased worker precarity to remote work arrangements first brought forward during the COVID-19 pandemic, the world of work is different than it was a decade ago. This review brings an opportunity to update the minimum employment standards in this province and make improvements to the working lives of people all across the province.”
Read more for the highlights of CUPE’s recommendations.
The Canadian Union of Public Employees, representing 7,000 education support staff across the province, stands in full support of the teachers who voted in support of job sanctions following the Sask. Party government’s refusal to negotiate a fair deal at the bargaining table.
“CUPE Saskatchewan stands in solidarity with the members of the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation,” said Judy Henley, president of CUPE Saskatchewan. “Scott Moe and the Sask. Party have underfunded and made devastating cuts to education – and teachers, along with education support staff, have directly felt the impacts. Instead of negotiating to solve some of these issues at the bargaining table, the Sask. Party has instead refused to negotiate and has shown disrespect towards teachers through misleading billboards. Today’s vote in favour of job sanctions makes it clear – it’s time for the Sask. Party to get back to the bargaining table and negotiate a fair agreement with teachers.”
Yesterday’s speech from the throne, which sets out the priorities for the government ahead of the fall sitting of the legislature, is more proof that Scott Moe and the Sask. Party are out of sync with the priorities of working people in the province.
“Once again, we see Scott Moe and the Sask. Party are doing very little to address the key issues faced by Saskatchewan people: affordability and the cost of living, the crisis in health care and long-term care, and the lack of funding for public education,” said Judy Henley, president of CUPE Saskatchewan. “We can’t build and protect Saskatchewan with the lowest minimum wage in Canada, public services at their breaking point from chronic underfunding, and frontline workers experiencing burnout and below inflation wages. Instead of coming up with real solutions, the government is more focused on picking fights with the federal government than they are on making life better for working people in Saskatchewan.”
Henley said that other than vague promises, it is disappointing that the government is still not taking recruitment and retention of workers seriously.
“This government likes to talk about jobs, but when it comes to actually addressing how to recruit and retain needed workers in areas like childcare and health care, it’s clear that they have no plan to boost funding and boost the wages of frontline workers that are key to retention,” added Henley.
QUEBEC CITY: In an unprecedented show of unity, over 2,500 delegates attending the CUPE National Convention have voted in favour of an emergency resolution to condemn Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe’s assault on the Charter rights of Saskatchewan children.
Scott Moe’s Bill 137, introduced on October 12, 2023, pre-emptively invokes the Notwithstanding Clause, which threatens to suspend Charter rights for Saskatchewan’s most vulnerable children. The emergency resolution highlights the misuse of the Notwithstanding Clause as a dangerous precedent that leaves the door open for further erosions of fundamental human rights, including those of marginalized groups and workers.