KELOWNA— CUPE library workers in the Okanagan have voted over 96 per cent in favour of a strike.
The strong strike mandate stems from frustration members are feeling about the employer’s unwillingness to negotiate says CUPE 1123 president and bargaining committee member Rose Jurkic.
Negotiations are at a standstill after multiple bargaining sessions and two mediation sessions. The CUPE bargaining committee says that the remaining issues such as wage increases and benefits could be resolved with some cooperation from the employer.
“The employer has put us in a tough position, the work we do inside our communities is important and we don’t want to see that disrupted,” said Jurkic. “However, in comparison to libraries of similar sizes we have fallen behind. We’re only asking for what workers doing the same type of work we do have.”
No immediate job action is planned and Jurkic hopes that both sides can return to the table and negotiate a collective agreement.
CUPE 1123 represents 150 library workers who provide front-line services to their communities at 16 different branches throughout the Okanagan region.