School is back in session. Unfortunately, this seems not to have had an effect on our employer, as the bargaining committee has yet to hear back from them. It has been almost three weeks, and every day that goes by is another day to ponder the possible reasons for this delay, and to come up short with one that is in any way acceptable. Our members want to return to work so that they can once again offer the great public service they are accustomed to giving the citizens of Vancouver. Let’s get back to the table so we can finally begin to negotiate.
Last week, the Vancouver School Board requested from CUPE 391 access to the libraries that are shared between VPL and the VSB. These are Britannia and Strathcona. Ideally we would like the libraries to remain tightly shut, but we agreed that the students and their teachers would be permitted to access the materials during school hours and for school programs only. The libraries will remain closed to the public.
Despite the grey clouds, there are always things to look forward to, thanks to the strength and vigor of our members. Tomorrow the Bike Brigade (see post below for details) will embark on a marathon of picketing, with the goal of visiting every single branch. For lunch they will be dropping by Kerrisdale’s BBQ at 1 pm. Then well deserved refreshments at the end of the day at the Cedar Cottage Pub.
Friday is payday with a free lunch! My favorite. This day will have the honour of having a theme. Black and White. Everyone is encourage to wear only black and white clothing and to wear signs that let the public know where they can find the truth about CUPE 391 proposals and our reasons for walking the line. More details will be forthcoming.
Things are moving along nicely at Champlain. Here’s an update Dana sent us:
“Champlain continues to be a very pleasant place to picket. Now with
school back in session the foot traffic has increased greatly and we
are getting even more feedback and signatures. We have had several
donations and offerings of support from cookies to coffee as well as a
promise of fruit and cheese from a retired teacher who knows how hard
it can be out on the line.”
Champlain pickets will be up Wednesday and Thursday from 9-1 this week, and Monday through Thursday from 9-1 next week. If anyone is interested in picketing at Champlain, let them know at the registration desk at Central. If enough people are interested, picketing hours can be expanded.
Note: It has been observed that with the copious amounts of coffee being drunk on the lines there are copious amounts of paper cups going in the garbage. Folks are encouraged to bring their own mugs to the lines to help lessen our environmental footprint.
Great ideas are coming through to the Strike Action Committee through the suggestion box at Central. Please continue to send in all your brainstorms. Any questions or comments can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the union office. We are attempting to answer all your questions on an ongoing bases. They will be posted on our bargaining resources page (see right) under a new heading entitle FAQs.
Thanks everyone for your perseverance and dedication. It is reflected in your Bargaining Committee and we are determined to bring you the best new collective agreement we can.