Sask. teachers union threatens strike

The Saskatchewan Teachers Federation has issued a strike threat to try to get contract talks with the province kickstarted.

The Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation has issued a strike threat to try to get contract talks with the province kickstarted.

The STF, which represents about 12,000 teachers across the province, has been without a contract since last August.

On Monday, the union said 95 per cent teachers voted April 13 in a favour of job action that could range from a partial withdrawal of voluntary services to a full-scale walkout.

"The goal of the Teachers’ Bargaining Committee is to return to the bargaining table to negotiate an agreement that affirms the worth of teachers, not to take sanctions," said Gwen Dueck, chief spokesperson for the Teachers’ Bargaining Committee. "We urge the Government-Trustee Bargaining Committee to bring increased resources to the table to reflect the professionalism of teachers."

The federation is seeking a 12 per cent wage increase in one year.

The latest offer from the school boards association proffered a 5.5 per cent increase over three years.

The union said teachers would give 48 hours notice before any withdrawal of services.

"Teachers are committed to the students and the public they serve. They do not want to withdraw services, but this is an issue of fairness and valuing the professional role of teachers in ensuring the future of our province," Dueck said.

Teachers have been negotiating with the province for the last 11 months and have been without a contract since August 31, 2010.