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October 23, 2009

Authors’ panel inspires support for public libraries

VANCOUVER—The weather was miserable, and the event was up against Writer’s Festival readings throughout the city, but that didn’t stop more than 100 people from showing up at the Vancouver Public Library’s Central branch for Thursday night’s CUPE 391 writers event,

October 21, 2009

Local writers to stir it up in defense of public libraries

VANCOUVER—Curious book lovers might wonder what Caroline Adderson has in common with Stan Persky, or how David Chariandy might interface with political columnist Bill Tieleman. But these four writers, along with Larissa Lai and Carellin Brooks, will comprise the panel on Thursday night for what promises to be a lively discussion on public library funding and why the local integrity of library collections needs to be defended from BC Liberal cutbacks and the contracting out of services.

October 21, 2009

Paramedics support executive, return incumbents

RICHMOND—CUPE 873, Ambulance Paramedics of BC, gave a strong endorsement to their Executive Committee by returning all incumbents.

“This is a vote of confidence in our fight to improve ambulance services,” says CUPE 873 president John Strohmaier. “We are united as we move this strike forward.”

CUPE 873 delegates unanimously supported the entire executive and returned all incumbents to office.

October 19, 2009

Shining light on a distant struggle

Burmese human rights activist visits Canada, thanks CUPE for its support

BURNABY— As far as pariah states go, Burma is unlike any other place in the world—a place, as U2’s Bono once sang, “that has to be believed to be seen.” Ruled for the past 47 years by a brutal military dictatorship that tramples on human rights in every conceivable way, the country now known as Myanmar has gone from being the once-prosperous “rice bowl of Asia” to a place where 39 million of its people—most of the population—live below the poverty line.

October 19, 2009

Meeting of minds in the Kootenays

CRESTON—CUPE BC general vice-presidents Deb Taylor and Paul Faoro, along with regional and area office staff, travelled to the southeastern corner of the province last week to take part in the Kootenay District Council (KDC)’s third annual all-presidents meeting.

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October 16, 2009

District of Hope workers reach contract agreement

HOPE—Municipal workers have reached an agreement with the District of Hope and have a new contract, effective today. Members of CUPE 458 voted last night to accept the agreement and the District has also signed off on it.

The four-year contract includes 3% increases on January 1 of each year, some improvements to group life insurance, eye exam coverage and a boot allowance. The negotiating process was long, with some difficulties along the way.

October 16, 2009

CUPE demands audit in wake of ‘Gold medal bonuses’

BURNABY— At a time when some local businesses have been forced to close and lay off staff because of transportation and security adjustments for the 2010 Games, VANOC’s decision to dole out $30 million in bonuses to staff following the event is an outrageous waste of money that should trigger an immediate audit of VANOC operations, says the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

October 16, 2009

Solidarity and strong leadership at CUPE national convention

BURNABY-CUPE’s 24th national convention concluded in Montreal on October 9.

October 16, 2009

Ambulance Paramedic Convention Starts Monday

RICHMOND—More than 200 delegates from across B.C. are expected to attend the annual convention of the Ambulance Paramedics of BC, CUPE 873 that starts on Monday.

CUPE 873 president John Strohmaier will chair the proceedings.

October 16, 2009

Catalyst Paper loss in court a victory for communities

BURNABY—Justice Peter Voith dismissed Catalyst Paper’s suit against four coastal communities today. The corporation had refused to pay their assessed municipal taxes in Port Alberni, North Cowichan, Campbell River, and Powell River and had sued the municipalities, claiming that the tax rate they were being assessed was unreasonable and illegal.

“The failure of corporations to pay property taxes threatens the health, well-being and sustainability of B.C.’s communities,” says CUPE BC president Barry O’Neill.