Premier encouraging crown workers to return to the bargaining table
REGINA -- After 5000 unionized crown employees walked off the job Friday when contract talks failed to produce an agreement, Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe addressed the issue at the Sask. Party Convention on Saturday.
Strikers didn’t show up for the premier’s address, but the labour dispute was on the minds of delegates.
The premier invited the union to reconsider the government’s final offer, which includes a two year salary freeze followed by five per cent phased in over the following three years.
“There’s an offer on the table of five per cent over five years, a long term offer, and we would ask that these tables come back to the bargaining table,” Moe said.
On Friday, striking Unifor held a brief rally outside the Regina Convention Centre where the Sask. Party was meeting.
They want the same salary increase that politicians accepted this year.
“I don’t begrudge them getting wage increases,” Unifor president Jerry Dias said. “What I can’t understand is how they begrudge us getting wage increases.”
On Saturday SaskTel’s president posed for a photo with strikers on the picket line as he made his way to work.
Minister of Finance Donna Harpauer says she’s staying on top of the situation.
“We still believe firmly as a government that a strike is not in the best interest of workers,” Harpauer said.
There was no interaction between union picketers and Sask. Party delegates. The union rallied for only a few minutes, made their point and left without incident.