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ICBC inks two-year labour contract with union staffers

A deal reached last week should prevent a repeat of job action that hit the Duncan ICBC outlet in September. - Peter W. Rusland/file
A deal reached last week should prevent a repeat of job action that hit the Duncan ICBC outlet in September.
— image credit: Peter W. Rusland/file

Cowichanians visiting ICBC offices won't face any service gaps after a new two-year contract with unionized staffers was reached last Friday.

ICBC and the Canadian Office and Professional Employees union ratified the agreement under B.C.'s Cooperative Gains Mandate, transportation minister Mary Polak says in a release.

The agreement follows COPE's day-long labour action in September. It covers about 4,600 COPE 378 members — including Cowichan's 17 workers — in ICBC's customer claims, driver licensing and administering road tests, plus providing insurance, vehicle licensing, road safety and general administration.

The two-year bargain includes four separate, general wage increases of one per cent each funded from within existing budgets, as required by the mandate.

Victoria has said there's no new money to fund wage hikes, and there's no desire to download more costs on families or future generations.

The mandate lets public-sector employers negotiate modest wage increases funded from savings within existing budgets, not adding costs to taxpayers and ratepayers, and not sacrificing services.

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