SHERWOOD PARK – The AUPE Local 118/015 Bargaining Committee is strongly recommending ratification by members of a new collective agreement with Diversified Transportation in the face of the employer’s decision not to renew its service contract with Strathcona County.
A ratification vote will take place Thursday, June 26, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the County of Strathcona Bus Barn.
A tentative agreement was reached on June 20 between the Local 118/015 and Diversified Transportation bargaining teams.
The one-year agreement incorporates all changes agreed to in negotiations to date with all remaining current language in the old agreement, said Staff Negotiator Jim Petrie, who has been leading the negotiating team from AUPE, the union Diversified employees voted to join six months ago.
This includes the new benefits plan and the agreement regarding outstanding medical benefits claims, said Petrie.
In addition, the agreement includes a 5 per cent increase in wages retroactive to Jan. 1, 2008.
Petrie emphasized that the agreement is the best possible response to the employer’s decision announced last week not to renew its contract to provide municipal transportation services to the County of Strathcona.
“In these unusual circumstances, ratification of the interim agreement will facilitate transition of this bargaining unit to employment by a new entity,” he said.
“It is important to emphasize that under these circumstances there is no good outcome to a no vote,” Petrie said. “Local members are urged in the strongest terms to vote yes to ratify this new agreement. This will allow your union local to continue to exist to represent you another day.”
NOTE: An earlier version of this update suggested the County of Strathcona had taken a position on the ratification of the proposed agreement. This is not the case.
Local 118/015 Bargaining Committee
AUPE Staff Negotiator