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Local 203 ratifies contract with Guelph Independent Living

(GUELPH ) – After more than a year of on-again, off-again bargaining, members of OPSEU Local 203 have ratified their first contract with Guelph Independent Living.

The settlement includes a one per cent wage increase.

"It is our first contract and it was a very tough fight to get it," said Laura Webster, president of Local 203, representing about 75 workers at the agency. "I am very proud of the stand our members took in the face of an employer who gave little impression all along that it was interested in serious bargaining.

"But this process has brought us together as a bargaining unit and we are tremendously gratified by the support we received from the community and our clients. This is a contract that we will build upon in future rounds of bargaining."

Members of Local 203 had originally set a Nov. 13, 2010 strike deadline but later extended that to Jan. 13, and then, Feb. 26.

GIL staff work with people with physical disabilities and the elderly. Going into contract negotiations they were among the most underpaid doing similar work in the region. They voted to join OPSEU in Oct. 2009 and were in negotiations with management since Jan. 2010.

For more information:

Laura Webster President OPSEU Local 203 519-830-1259 

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