Maintenance workers at Thorold and St. Catharines campuses poised to strike

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Published August 15, 2022 at 3:44 pm

It’s one week to go before custodians and maintenance workers at the Brock University campuses in St. Catharines are in a position to strike.

Local Union President Ken McClelland said as of last Friday, he believed there was a bigger change of a strike than a settlement.

The union is looking for a 3.75 per cent pay hike while the university is offering 2.5 per cent.

On its end, the university said both itself and the union have met 10 times at the negotiations table since April.

There will be one last ditch effort at the table this Friday (August 19) which will include a provincial mediator.

Ironically, it’s a provincial bill which has slowed down the union’s pay hike – Bill 124, the same bill that handcuffed nurse to a one per cent pay hike per year just before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

The union represents the school’s cleaners, maintenance workers, parking lot attendants, groundskeepers, maintenance workers and various tradespeople, totaling 150 full-time and part-time workers.

McClelland says the union have worked without a deal since May 1.

Should the two sides not reach an agreement on a contract this Friday, it will be the first strike in the 52-year history of CUPE’s Local 1295.

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