Members of a union that includes a handful of employees of the Capilano University Squamish campus recently voted to ratify a new collective agreement with the B.C. government, averting a strike.
Three-hundred sixty-four Capilano U. administrative and support workers were among those who voted in mid-December to ratify a new four-year contract that includes a “modest” wage increase spread over the next two years, government officials said in a statement issued on Tuesday (Jan. 15).
Jerra Hodge, a spokesperson for the Canadian Office and Professional Employees’ Union (COPE) Local 378, said the new contract runs through mid-2014. The wage increase is set at one per cent per year going back to mid-2010, when the government imposed a “zero net increase” mandate on all its public-service unions.
The new contract, which kicked in Dec. 1, 2012, will see increases of one per cent kick in every six months until the end of the term, she said.
“We’re generally pleased with it,” Hodge said. “It’s pretty consistent with what other people in the public sector and also at other colleges and universities received. It helps keep us from falling further behind.”
In late November, COPE 378 members working for Capilano University had voted 94 per cent in favour of strike action if an agreement was not reached. While only six of the 364 members work at the Squamish campus, COPE 378 had the support of the Capilano University Faculty Association, which agreed not to cross the COPE picket lines if there had been a strike.