Education support workers “suffering”

Vancouver, BC, Canada / News Talk 980 CKNW | Vancouver's News. Vancouver's Talk

As “exploratory talks” resume tomorrow between the BC Teachers Federation and its employer, the union representing thousands of support workers says members are also feeling the pinch, as they walk in solidarity with teachers on the picket lines.

Chair of the K-12 Provincial Bargaining Committee, Marcel Marsolais, says members will only be reimbursed for lost wages after a tentative deal reached with the BC Public School Employers Association is ratified by locals.

“Strike pay is there, and after the third day there is only $15 dollars a day we get from our division, CUPE BC, as of Monday, day 10, its 75 dollars a day.”

He adds “It’s not enough to subsidize wages, it’s not meant to do that, but it is enough to hopefully put food on the table for families. They’re suffering…. our members are suffering out there.”

Marsolais says support workers earn 25-30 thousand dollars a year and many are taking a financial hit as the teachers dispute drags on.

While a food bank hasn’t been set up, the union will hand out food vouchers as needed.


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  1. Note to BCTF and other trough-feeding public unions – you think teachers and support staff are feeling the pinch – go talk to the many small businesses and other taxpayers that are paying the economy-killing taxes that pay for your salaries!

    • You forgot to suggest that while they are having those discussion also raise the payment of Basi/Virk legal fees, the stadium roof and other financial benefits bestowed upon Liberal insiders and supporters all paid for by taxpayers, not to mention the 16 mil campaign advertising for the Liberal benefit. Double standard, Skulker!

      • Kind of straying off the subject Lor . . .

        But the reality is the stadium is working great, the convention center doing the same . . .

        Why don’t you tell us how the FAST FERRIES are working out today . . . or are they posing as Budweiser Cans?

        ALL public sector unions feed off the pubic dime . . . time the showed a little restraint . . . yes !

        Was there a time in the 20th Century when the BCTF actually got along with a government? When was that . . . .

        • I’m irritated by the Fast Ferries, and campaigned to get ride of the NDP – your right, they were a disaster! But I take education out of the equation because our children will be in competition with tough Asian competition in the future. I know – I had a child in public school full Asian’s. Their idea of a fail is any mark under 90%. They are filing universities and good for them. Our children need to be able to compete in a competitive world of tomorrow. Your business and mine are not served by a compromised public education system. If you don’t want to believe the level of compromise, that’s fine, but it exists.

          As to the BCTF it is in fact the only organization attempting to bring information forward. Information which does not suite government policy (NDP/Liberal/ cons doesn’t matter). Attack them as much as you want, but you are in reality shooting the massager because you don’t want to hear the message.

        • It is not “straying off topic”. As Bill Good agreed, this is about priorities as was BC Place, Convention Centre, and the Truckers dispute where Clark sailed in like Wonder Woman on her Invisible plane to save the day. Oh, that’s right, the those items bring in money…but not a well-funded education system as an investment to end long term poverty from drop outs and misfits. And for those harping on “greedy” teachers, how is 1% off in wages a greed move. The real money is the infusion of money to deal with special ed students and class size–two things the private schools won’t touch. And about Fast Ferries, I say this as Soc Cred Voter, at least the misfit NDP’s TRIED to Re-vitalize our Ship building industry than ship out jobs to Hans in Germany. Wages made from those ship contracts went directly into our economy not the German economy. Dale, don’t be such a zealot that you can’t see that the world is round.

      • If the government spent the stadium roof money on the teachers it would have been spent in the last negotiations. Give that one up. We all know the teachers think they should be right at the top of the wage scale because they are sooooo important but to think that we should let the infrastructure crumble to satisfy their egos is a bit much.

        • Adults of the future the students of today, which constitute the human infrastructure which makes the economy work. My reference to Basi/Virk – stadium roof is designed to emphasis on this governments priorities in spending. Yes, many would like to forget about it as you soooooooooo say.

  2. What about the families of school children that are now having to pay for child care, camps, end of year trips (school boards withholding fundraised money for school trips) end of year ceremonies. You want to belong to a union and strike – you made that choice stop bitching. Families have been left swinging in the wind. Where’s our support. Who is going to reimburse us for our extra expenses when this childish display is over. No one.

  3. The government continues to save money during this dispute so they’re not in a hurry. And twitter feeds suggest admin are getting nicely compensated for additional work done…