Blood Service Workers: CUPE solidarity in action

February 18th, 2016, Charlottetown – The Canadian Blood Service (CBS) workers in PEI are now entering week 25 of their strike. However, they have received some good news from the CUPE National leaders. Mark Hancock, CUPE National President, signed a thousand dollar cheque to each striking worker.

With this recent contribution, nearly $20,000 has been raised by the CUPE membership for the CBS strikers. “During the holidays, with the initiative of Local 1870, CUPE PEI had organized a Christmas fundraiser for these striking workers. CUPE PEI stepped in to help, and now, the National leadership wants to do their part too,” said Lori MacKay, President of CUPE PEI.

“Even if the CBS employees are members of another union, we wanted to show solidarity,” said MacKay.

Workers deserve good contracts. Even if they are not CUPE members, their fight is our fight. Like the old trade-unionist principle goes: “An injury to one is an injury to all”.

The striking CBS workers are members of NSUPE Local 19, and they demand government intervention to help settle the dispute.

“The issue is guaranteed work hours. We all like our jobs, however, CBS wants us all to be ‘on-demand’ workers. Some of us are working less than 19 hours per week, and we’re also expected to be scheduled ‘on-demand’. How can we provide for ourselves, let alone our families, if getting a second job is impossible because of unpredictable work hours?” questioned Tanya Herrell, Local 19 President.