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Union Demands Wage Increases Up to 13% in First Year of New Contract

This morning, strike action at Strathcona Gardens Recreation Complex began.

Campbell River, BC –  This morning, strike action at Strathcona Gardens Recreation Complex began. After ten months without a contract and negotiations at an impasse, the employer bargaining committee from the Strathcona Regional District continues to wait for a response from the United Steelworkers Local 1-1937 regarding the offer of binding arbitration as an effective way to resolve the differences between the two parties. The union bargaining committee recommended a tentative agreement which its union membership rejected. That tentative agreement provided a four-year collective agreement with general wage increases of 2%, 2%, 2% and 2.25 %, an offer that both the union and the employer agreed was fair. The same union bargaining committee is now demanding wage increases that range from a minimum of 6.77% to 13.28% in the first year of a new contract.

Wage rates are on par with recreation facilities that have similar operations including pools and arenas and the wage increases offered in the tentative agreement were on par with other recently negotiated agreements on the North Island and Mid Island including the City of Campbell River, the City of Courtenay, the Town of Qualicum Beach, the Village of Cumberland, the Regional District of Nanaimo and the Comox Valley Regional District.

The employer believes that the wages paid to employees at Strathcona Gardens Regional District are fair and combined with an excellent benefit package including paid sick time and a defined benefit pension plan, provide fair compensation for the work being performed. The employer pays for all job related training including the time taken to do the training. The employer also provides additional wage premiums for teaching fitness classes and working evening shifts.

Andy Adams, Strathcona Gardens Commission Chair states, “After what we’ve been through over the last 18 months with the pandemic, it is in everyone’s best interest to resolve this conflict without job action. We provide an important and valuable resource to the community and I hear regularly how grateful members of the public are to enjoy the recreation and leisure services that we provide. I remain hopeful that the union will agree to meet with an arbitrator.”

About Strathcona Gardens Recreation Complex
Strathcona Gardens Recreation Complex is a multi-use facility located within the City of Campbell River and is owned and operated by the Strathcona Regional District. The complex includes two ice arenas, a leisure ice pad, a 37.5 metre pool, a leisure pool, a weight room, a fitness studio and meeting rooms. This is a well used facility that services and is funded by the taxpayers of the City of Campbell River and Electoral Area “D” – Oyster Bay – Buttle Lake.


Media Contact:
Laurie Gage
Senior Manager, Human Resources, Strathcona Regional District
Phone: 250-830-6723 | Email: