Kitchener-Waterloo

Laurier, union reach tentative agreement with CUPE Local 926

Officials from Wilfrid Laurier University have announced they reached a tentative agreement with the CUPE Local 926, which represents approximately 110 custodial, grounds and trades workers on the school’s Waterloo campus.

Agreement needs to be ratified by union members, university's board of governors

Custodial staff, grounds keepers and trades people walked off the job Sunday, after the university refused to drop the option to replace retirees with contract workers. (Dan Mackenzie/Twitter)

Wilfrid Laurier University officials announced Friday evening they have reached a tentative agreement with the union that represents custodial, grounds and trades workers on the school's Waterloo campus.

Details of the agreement were not released.

The deal will still need to be ratified by the 110 affected members of CUPE Local 926 and the university's board of governors. Once a deal is ratified, the employees currently on strike will return to work.

"We are pleased to have reached a tentative settlement," president and vice-chancellor of Wilfrid Laurier University Max Blouw said in a statement. "I would like to acknowledge the hard work that all parties contributed to reaching this agreement."

Earlier in the week, the Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 926 accused the university of "bully tactics." It said management wanted concessions that would pay "poverty wages" and would "effectively give the university 'carte blanche' to contract out custodial work."

Custodial staff, grounds keepers and trades people walked off the job Sunday, after the university refused to drop the option to replace retirees with contract workers.

But some workers decided to cross the picket lines and go to work, ignoring the union's strike action.

CUPE Ontario president Fred Hahn said ideally, everyone would have been walking the picket line to get their message across, "but it's not clear that all the members are participating."