Huron Perth Children's Aid Society workers deliver strong strike mandate

    LONDON, ON, Oct. 2 /CNW Telbec/ - Huron Perth Children's Aid Society
workers voted 93 per cent to strike if a fair deal is not reached with
management. The 80 child protection and administrative support workers,
represented by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), are facing heavy
workloads, inferior wages and concession demands from their employer.
    "Our members are united to fight for a fair contract," said Laurel
LeBeau, president of CUPE 1427. "Our strong strike vote results show that we
are determined to resolve issues such as workload and low wages, that affect
working and living conditions."
    The child protection workers are on-call in the evenings and weekends
because of staff shortages, adding to their stress level and reducing down
time from their demanding jobs. The administrative support workers are paid
10 per cent less than their counterparts in other CAS agencies from
surrounding communities. "This employer must look at the facts and address
issues that affect workers and the services they provide to children and
families in Perth and Huron counties," stressed LeBeau.
    Management is also demanding concessions including the elimination of
paid vacation for workers returning from maternity leave. "It is unacceptable
for management to penalize workers returning from maternity leave by denying
them paid vacation," said LeBeau. "Management must come to conciliation
prepared to drop these ridiculous demands and address the issues of workload
and low wages - otherwise we will be facing a strike situation that will not
benefit anyone."
    Conciliation talks are scheduled for Thursday, October 4. The workers'
last contract expired on March 31, 2007.

For further information:

For further information: Laurel LeBeau, President CUPE 1427, (519)
891-0057; Jennifer Kaufmann, CUPE National Representative, (519) 433-1753;
James Chai, CUPE Communications, (416) 292-3999

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