Non-voting teachers happy with status quo?

Dear editor,

The B.C. Teachers Federation says there are over 41,000 school teachers in the federation.

Strike vote results from March 6 show that only 29,301 teachers voted, with 26,051 voting yes for strike action. This leaves 14,949 teachers, or 36.46 per cent, who seem to be happy with the way things are.

The way things are is that the average teacher compensation in B.C. is $89,000 per year ($70,624 in wages, $18,000 in benefits), two weeks off at Christmas, two-week spring break, lieu days, a pension plan that B.C. taxpayers pay 16.13 per cent of salary into, having July and August off, and a taxpayer-funded benefits plan.

With the Alberta Teachers' Federation recently agreeing to a four-year contract of zero per cent increase in the first three years, and a two-per-cent pay raise in the fourth year with a cash bonus, and with the announcement March 7 that Staples will close 225 stores, these 14,949 are saying, "Things are great the way they are.

"We are lucky to be working."

Joe Sawchuk,



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