From left to right, Educational Assistants Ute Perry, Sylvia Sundby, Christine Gillies, and Maria, Mangiola on the picket line for CUPE Local 441 as talks break off between the school district and the union on Nov. 6, 2019. (Sophie Heizer/News Staff)

Talks break off between CUPE, SD63 as strike heads toward the end of day eight

Picket lines expect to remain Thursday

It’s back to the drawing board again after three days of the latest round of bargaining between CUPE Local 441 and Saanich School District 63. Talks broke off late Tuesday night when the school district and the union failed to reach an agreement that satisfied both sides. Picket lines will remain up Thursday at all schools in the district.

READ MORE: Bargaining resumes in Saanich School District strike, classes still cancelled

President of CUPE 441 Dean Coates said on Wednesday he’s disappointed they couldn’t reach an agreement with the employer. “Our efforts to be creative and move toward the employer’s position were not reciprocated and the employer would not add any additional funding,” Coates said.

The sticking point for the union is pay parity with other local school districts. Support workers in Saanich earn less than their local counterparts.

CUPE 441 members said recruitment and retention of school support staff is difficult because support staff can earn more in neighboring school districts. They say the consequences are passed on to the students in these schools with support staff shortages.

READ MORE: Pay disparity at heart of Saanich schools strike has 45-year-old roots

School District 63 said in a release Wednesday afternoon that it was aware of a closed CUPE 441 meeting scheduled for later in the day. The district expects to be able to provide parents and guardians more information about the outcome of that meeting later in the evening. CUPE 441 members will present the newest deal on the table and receive directions about what actions will be taken for Thursday.

For the latest updates, keep an eye on School District 63’s website at sd63.bc.ca.

sophie.heizer@saanichnews.com


Like us on Facebook and follow @yrlocaljourno

Just Posted

500 pounds of turkey served at Cool Aid community Christmas dinner

Annual dinner serves hundreds of community members

VIDEO: Annual Tuba Christmas concert draws large crowd to Market Square

Over 100 tuba and euphonium players gathered to play festive tunes

Revisit Christmas past as Point Ellice House displays Victorian-era traditions

Antique bobbles, cards, decor and more are on display

Bold and brassy quintet touches down at UVic

Internationally recognized Canadian Brass performing with Victoria Symphony on Dec. 21

Saanich church kicks off holidays with peaceful Winter Solstice service

St. Luke’s song-filled Christmas services come later

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

VIDEO: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Five things of note from Trudeau’s mandate letters to his ministers

Some marching orders come from the Liberal Party’s campaign, while others are new additions

Scheer’s resignation tips party into internal war over school tuition payments

The Conservatives have a Toronto convention already scheduled for April

Most Read