Dean Coates is president of CUPE 441 in Saanich, representing 500 members including all areas of support staff. They are a small district and are among the lowest-paid districts in the Province. The area is expensive to live in: young families aren’t prone to buying there; a lot of the land is part of the Agricultural Land Reserve; and so there’s not a lot of new development. That keeps prices high, so the district has been facing both declining enrolments and declining budgets for quite a long time. This has placed a strain on staffing and morale.
Daphne Ross is president of CUPE 476 in Powell River, a small local representing 160 members. She represents North Island in provincial bargaining.
Marcel has been on the provincial bargaining committee since provincial coordinated bargaining began in 1999, when it was called the sectoral bargaining committee. CUPE 409 has participated in regional bargaining with Lower Mainland locals stretching from the Sunshine Coast to Surrey for 25 years. Local 409, which represents education support workers in New Westminster, is suffering from the underfunding of education with 53 jobs lost since last June. Members are feeling the effects – with sick leave on the rise and morale at its lowest point. Underfunding is bound to have a negative impact on students and education, says Marcel.
CUPE 606 represents all education support workers with Nanaimo/Ladysmith School District 68 except for excluded staff.
Karen Wong is president of CUPE 3742 in Prince George. CUPE Local 3742 represents clerical, Education Assistants, and Aboriginal Education workers in K-12.
CUPE 382 represents 225 members who are outside workers with the Greater Victoria School District 61. There are two locals in the district, inside and outside workers. CUPE 947 represents secretaries, IT and Education Assistants and CUPE 382 represents the trades, non-trades, and custodial sector of the school district. Gilles served on the provincial bargaining committee in the last round of bargaining as well.
Leanne Toderian is a full-time president of CUPE Local 15 in Vancouver. The Local represents approximately 7,500 members in six major sectors: Municipal, Park, College/University, K-12, Health and Cultural. This will be her first experience bargaining K-12.