MEDIA RELEASE: Minister Must Explain her Definition of “Parity”

In an email to striking workers, Minister of Education Becky Druhan’s office has said workers should receive wage parity across the province. What Druhan didn’t say is that she wanted to continue to pay them less than people doing the same jobs in Halifax.

Her response states: “We know NSGEU is concerned about wage parity across the Regional Education Centres, and the Employer has proposed a way to ensure that happens.”

“This is wrong. The process Minister Druhan references was proposed by the government and rejected by the members because it would not ensure people on the South Shore and in the Valley would receive the same wage that is being paid right now in Halifax,” said NSGEU President Sandra Mullen, “They are essentially agreeing to pay everyone in rural Nova Scotia the same rates, but those rates would be less than elsewhere in the province. That is unacceptable.”

“MLAs are paid the same base salary no matter where they are from, why shouldn’t school support workers be paid the same, as well? The Minister must explain why she feels like workers in her own riding are worth less than those working elsewhere in Nova Scotia.”

Furthermore, government also refused to commit to actually implementing the findings from the review process they were proposing.

“Our bargaining committees are ready and waiting to return to the table to discuss a result that will ensure paying people in rural Nova Scotia the same as others doing the same work,” said Mullen, “Members of the Legislative Assembly are paid the same, as are civil servants, teachers and nurses. People in rural Nova Scotia are not worth less.”

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