BCGEU, province return to the bargaining table

09/24/2012 05:19 EDT | Updated 11/24/2012 05:12 EST
The B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union says talks with the province will resume this week as the two sides work to reach a new collective agreement for roughly 25,000 union members.

"It's time to sit down and hammer out an agreement, if possible. If not, it won't be for lack of effort," said BCGEU president Darryl Walker. "Our members want a deal and we're going to get one."

Talks broke down after mediation failed in June after the union rejected the province’s offer of a 3.5 per cent pay raise over two years.

The union had been seeking a 3.5 per cent wage increase in the first year and a cost of living increase in the second.

Since talks broke down, the BCGEU has conducted four one-day strikes and implemented an overtime ban.

The negotiations will be conducted with a media blackout in place. No information about the process and progress will be released while the two sides are talking.