VANCOUVER, March 30, 2012 /CNW/ - After almost three months of talks that produced few results at the bargaining table, the BCGEU will conduct a strike vote with its members covered by the Master Agreement with government. The agreement expires tomorrow, March 31.
"We came to the bargaining table with fair and reasonable proposals. Our proposals fully acknowledge the economic challenges facing British Columbia. They also take into consideration the cuts our members have faced over the last few years," says BCGEU president Darryl Walker.
"Our members have not had a pay increase in three years. At the same time inflation has reduced the spending power of their pay cheques by more than 5 per cent. BCGEU members did their part to help the province deal with the economic crisis that began in 2007. They can not keep falling behind," says Walker.
"We presented the government with concrete proposals that would produce hundreds of millions of dollars in new annual revenues and savings," says Walker. "Government negotiators showed no interest in these proposals. Instead, they presented a wage offer that is well below inflation and well below wage increases that many private workers will get. Our members need to start moving forward."
The strike vote will be conducted with the 25,000 BCGEU members who work in:
- Corrections and sheriff services
- Hospital and allied services
- Retail liquor stores and warehouse operations
- Social workers, child protection, probation officers and system analysts
- Government administrative and support services
- Environmental, technical and operational services
The strike vote will be conducted during April and will be completed on May 4.
Evan Stewart, BCGEU Communications (604) 220-3095.