PRESS RELEASE: Union leaders urge Edmonton City Council to forestall UCP intervention in looming strike


An imposed agreement would be bad for workers and the City.

EDMONTON – The leaders of some of Alberta’s largest public sector unions have sent a strongly-worded letter to Edmonton City Council urging them to intervene on the side of their employees before the UCP provincial government steps in to suppress those workers’ wages and strip them of their bargaining rights.

“We are writing today to urge you to consider the possibility that you are, wittingly or unwittingly, being used by the provincial UCP government to ‘road test’ a back-to-work strategy on City of Edmonton employees that will then be turned against the other 250,000 Alberta public sector workers whose collective agreements expire this year,” according to the letter’s authors.

The letter was signed by the leaders of the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE), the United Nurses of Alberta (UNA), the Alberta Teachers Association (ATA), the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), the Health Sciences Association of Alberta (HSAA), the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU), the Non-Academic Staff Association (NASA) and the Alberta Federation of Labour (AFL).

The leaders say it’s not too late to avert a strike, but only if City Council reverses its position that it should not be directly involved in negotiations.

“A deal can still be struck. But only if you step up to the plate, take charge and commit to cleaning up the mess created by your City Manager. He may be a UCP co-conspirator, but you don’t have to be one, as well. You have the power to stop the UCP government from stepping in. You have the power to short circuit their plan to use draconian legislation. Only you have that power. We urge you to use it,” concludes the letter.

The full letter can be found here.

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For More Information:
John Ashton,
Director of Communications