The union representing approximately 3,840 school support workers in Surrey, including clerical workers, education assistants, and caretakers, has voted 87 per cent in favour of striking.
Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) local 728 held its vote last weekend and joins more than a dozen locals representing thousands of employees provincewide who have also authorized strike action.
The union argues bargaining talks with the B.C. Public School Employers' Association have broken down because the employer is standing by the provincial government's net-zero mandate and is unwilling to negotiate a wage increase – which school CUPE workers haven't had since 2009.
Provincial bargaining began last November on behalf of 27,000 education support workers provincewide. CUPE will plan its next steps in the coming weeks.