SURREY – CUPE Local 402 and the City of Surrey begin two days of contract negotiations today, marking the start of bargaining for more than 17,000 municipal workers throughout the Lower Mainland. CUPE Local 402 is the first of 21 CUPE locals that will be bargaining at 30 tables with 20 municipalities over the coming months.
CUPE Local 402 president Jeannie Kilby says her local is prepped and ready for this round of talks. “Over the past several months we have consulted with our members on issues and priorities and we are looking forward to exchanging proposals with the City of Surrey.” Talks are scheduled for today and tomorrow. So far, Surrey and Local 402 are the only parties to announce specific bargaining dates.
CUPE municipal locals negotiate with employers including Surrey, Vancouver, North Vancouver, Lions Bay, Burnaby, Richmond, Delta, Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, New Westminster, White Rock, Port Moody, Langley, Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows, Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Mission, Squamish and Whistler.
CUPE Metro Bargaining Coordinator Tom O’Leary expects most of the locals and their employers to launch formal negotiations before the end of the year. Most of the current four-year contracts expire on December 31, 2015.
“Our locals are organized and motivated – we’re looking forward to a respectful and productive round of talks leading to fair and reasonable collective agreements,” says O’Leary.