Striking inside workers reach tentative deal with City

CUPE 882 workers picket outside of Prince Albert City Hall on Sept. 11, 2023. – Herald file photo

After two days of bargaining, striking inside workers have reached a tentative agreement with the City of Prince Albert.

CUPE 882 and the City of Prince Albert reached a tentative agreement on Tuesday following two days of face-to-face meetings. Both groups also met separately with a special mediator on Wednesday, Sept. 10. Union members will meet on Friday to vote on the offer.

“The bargaining committee has worked hard to make gains at the table,” CUPE national representative Mira Lewis said in a press release. “Moving forward, the next steps are in the hands of our membership.”

Union members received details about the tentative agreement during a meeting Tuesday evening.

According to a CUPE press release, the agreement includes coverage for vision care for all employees, as well as expanded EFAP coverage to include non-permanent employees. The City of Prince Albert’s wage offer remains the same, but pay bands will be adjusted to bring the lowest paid workers above minimum wage.

The agreement also includes an MOU on market supplements to adjust wages for hard to recruit classifications.

Union members began work to rule actions in August, where they refused to dress in uniform or provide training. They began a full strike on Sept. 11.

The tentative contract affects the City of Prince Albert’s inside workers who are employed at facilities like the E.A. Rawlinson Centre, Frank Dunn Pool, Alfred Jenkins Field House, and the Art Hauser Centre.

The strike forced some organizations to use volunteers to keep operations going. Examples include the Prince Albert Raiders home opener at the Art Hauser Centre, where volunteers helped operate the canteen.

Union members have been without a contract since December 2021.