The renewed contracts included wage increases that guarantee workers remain above the statutory minimum wage and significant improvements to their health and dental benefit plan such as less waiting time to get on the benefits and more money for dental and paramedical services.
“My co-workers and I were happy about the wage increases and especially the benefits improvements. Working throughout Covid has been tough on all of us but being part of a union that continues to fight for more dignified working conditions for janitors is helping us all get through this collectively,” says Hermie Crncic, who works for GDI at the Waterfront.
Janitors, who have worked hard throughout this pandemic to keep the public safe must be compensated for their hard work.
Negotiations were unique for each of the three janitorial companies where members working for GDI were pushed to the point of a strike vote. But ultimately, all the workers won agreements that have once again pushed standards upwards for unionized janitors in BC.
“We are happy with what we achieved so far but know there is still more work to be done,” Alpine worker, Alfiya Ishak explains. “The fight to improve working conditions for janitors is ongoing and we hope that when we get back to the bargaining table next time, more janitors in Vancouver will have joined us so we can win an even stronger contract.”
The three collective agreements will all expire in May 2023 and janitors are already preparing for a major mobilization.