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Lindsay, Ont. – CUPE 855 members voted earlier today to accept a revised offer from the City of Kawartha Lakes, ending the 46-day old strike. Over 430 municipal workers went on strike on February 4 over issues of contracting out, age discrimination and management’s lack of respect for workers and public services.

“We want to thank everyone for their support during this strike,” said Lyn Edwards, CUPE 855 president. “Our members are eager to return to work and serve our community. We remain committed to do what it takes to fight contracting out of public services in our community.”

“This strike demonstrates the strength and collective will of our members in fighting for what we believe in – respect for workers and public services,” said Edwards. “Over the past two months, we have exposed management’s contracting out agenda and their callousness towards their own workers.” The new four-year contract will expire December 31, 2011.

“Our fight is not finished,” said Edwards. “The province’s legislation to allow workers to continue working past the age of 65 was fundamentally flawed, turning mandatory retirement into mandatory discrimination. CUPE will explore the possibility of legal challenges and other means to make sure workers who continue working after they turn 65, receive the same benefits and working conditions as all of their colleagues.”

“We will build from this fight and work with concerned residents to ensure that the City of Kawartha Lakes’ future remains in the hands of our community,” said Edwards. “We need to work with community members to ensure we have real leadership and accountability on municipal council – democracy will prevail.”

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For further information, please contact:

Lyn Edwards               Alison Davidson         James Chai
CUPE 855 President    CUPE National Rep.  CUPE Communications
705-878-2152             705-760-5113          416-292-3999