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Union Fails to Ratify Four Year Tentative Agreement with SRD

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Campbell River, BC – Prior to the expiration on December 31, 2020, of the collective agreement between the Strathcona Regional District (SRD) and the United Steelworkers Local 1-1937, representing 82 unionized workers at Strathcona Gardens Recreation Complex, the employer and union bargaining committees met to negotiate the terms of a new agreement. The parties were able to narrow the bargaining landscape to a handful of issues, the most significant being wages. On March 19, 2021, the Strathcona Regional District made application to the Labour Board seeking a mediator to assist with resolving the outstanding issues. The Labour Board appointed Mr. Trevor Sones, who assisted the parties in drafting a tentative agreement. Both parties agreed to take the tentative agreement to their respective ratification process, with their recommendation to accept the tentative agreement.

Following the employer’s ratification of the tentative agreement, the union’s bargaining committee brought the agreement to their members with their recommendation to accept the agreement. The union membership rejected the advice of their bargaining committee and rejected the tentative agreement.

The tentative four-year agreement provided for general wage increases over four years from 2021 to 2024 of 2%, 2%, 2% and 2.25%. These wage increases are 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.

“We know that the last 18 months of this pandemic has been challenging for everybody,” said Chair of the Strathcona Regional District, Brad Unger, “but we also know how important it is that we continue to provide recreation and leisure services to our community, within the parameters of the public health orders, particularly for our youth and seniors. We are hopeful that our employees will reconsider the mediated tentative agreement to avoid a potential lengthy labour disruption.”

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.

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Media Contact:
Laurie Gage
Senior Manager, Human Resources, Strathcona Regional District
250-830-6723  |  lgage@srd.ca