SYDNEY, NS, March 20, 2015 /CNW/ - Staff at Town Daycare in Glace Bay have ratified a new collective agreement with their employer after four days on strike.
The new deal will expire December 31, 2015 and includes a pay increase of 1 per cent and a commitment that any additional funding secured from the provincial government will be subject to negotiation between the union and the employer with respect to wages. Unifor Local 4600 members at the daycare have agreed to work jointly with the employer to review the financial status of the facility.
"We can't and shouldn't expect trained professionals, charged with the early education and care of our children to be paid such low wages," said Susan Gill, President of Local 4600. "We had tremendous support from the parents and the entire community this week on the line and there was firm agreement that the province needs to do more to value these workers."
Negotiations endured for several months and the vote to strike was taken as a last resort when an offer of zero per cent was tabled.
"Low pay is not okay and it is past time for this to be addressed," said Lana Payne, Unifor Atlantic Regional Director. "The Nova Scotia government is reviewing childcare funding and Unifor will be making a detailed submission to the review process."
"The courage of these workers, mostly women, to take strike action and demand a better wage has been inspiring," continued Payne. "They did not take this step lightly, but believed it was time to take a stand for their entire profession and the sector of childcare. I commend them for their bold action."
"Although this was a trying time for our members and the community, it highlighted to the public the need for additional funding from our provincial government and on a broader scale, the need for a national childcare program," said Linda MacNeil, Unifor National Representative.
Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 305,000 workers. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers unions merged.
For further information: please contact Unifor Communications Staff Representative Shelley Burgoyne at [email protected] or (cell) 902-717-7491