Sunshine Coast K-12 support staff won’t vote on whether to accept B.C.’s newly announced provincial framework agreement until the end of the year.
First the nearly 200 local K-12 workers covered by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) will have to conclude bargaining with School District No. 46 (SD46).
CUPE Local 801 president Carolyn Smith said the SD46 bargaining needs to be complete “before we can hold a ratification vote on both the provincial framework agreement and our local bargaining agreement.”
SD46 board chair Silas White said local bargaining was stalled while SD46 waited on provincial negotiations to conclude.
“It was clear that the provincial negotiations needed to be finished before we proceeded with ours,” White said, noting the major issues of salary and benefits have now been worked out at the provincial table. “We’ll be working on other issues, just sorting out some language, which we were working on when we started bargaining last school year.”
White expects the process to go smoothly; even so, Smith believes it will take until December to wrap things up.
“There is an end date of Dec. 20, 2013 named in the provincial framework agreement and this is the date we are shooting for in terms of getting all of our collective agreement ratified,” Smith said. “I am hopeful that we will be able to come to a mutually agreed collective agreement and complete ratification by the Dec. 20 deadline.”
CUPE 801 members include custodians, clerical staff, administration assistants, SETAs, maintenance staff, occupational therapists, speech and language pathologists, an industry training chef, a lab assistant and child care workers.