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One year down, tough talks to go

Across the country on Friday, the Canadian Media Guild marked the anniversary of the expiry of our collective agreements with the CBC. Yes, it’s been a year!

Your bargaining committee has been in talks with management toward a new, single agreement for all Guild members since last May. As you probably know, the talks haven’t been simple, and we face some significant challenges.

On a positive note, we have reached agreement on some important, progressive elements of a new agreement. We hope, for example, that the new dispute resolution process will resolve conflicts much more quickly than the current grievance procedure. The agreement on alternative work arrangements will help members find a better balance between their work and the other aspects of their life. As well, all Guild members will now have access to deferred salary leave.

More information on these and many more bargaining issues is available by going to http://www.cmg.ca/cbcbranchnegsupdates.asp .

At the same time, we have a fundamentally different view of the future of public broadcasting at the CBC from the one being put forward by the Corporation, both at the bargaining table and every day in our workplaces.

We think the future depends upon a stable, secure workforce, not a stable of “perma-temps” constantly looking over their shoulders to see if someone is coming to show them the door.

The bottom line is that we have yet to reach agreement on some very important issues and are now into tough bargaining. On April 11, we begin seven straight weeks of talks and this will be a critical time. We aim to make sure everything is on the table by the end of those seven weeks, including most monetary issues, such as proposals on salary scales and across the board wage increases.

We are working for a fair deal for our members that provides for a real job and a real career, a balance between work and life, and proper compensation for the work we do.

Your bargaining committee:
Arnold Amber, Toronto
Pierre Claveau, Vancouver
Brendan Elliott, Charlottetown
Percy Hatfield, Windsor
Joe Hill, Toronto
Wendy Hunt, Toronto
Gerry Jones, Regina
Barbara Saxberg, Toronto
Lee Siemon, Toronto
Chris Turner, Fredericton
Rick Warren, Vancouver
Dan Oldfield, Senior CMG staff representative

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