“My arguments are no longer working, so we must act.”
QUEBEC — The Syndicat de la fonction publique du Québec (SFPQ) wants to launch a strike in March, but acknowledges that mobilization will be “difficult.”
Discouraged by negotiations with the Treasury Board that have stalled for two years over salaries, the union of public employees began a tour Monday to seek a mandate for a strike of up to 10 days.
Union members protested in the cold Monday before the Treasury Board offices next to the National Assembly.
“My arguments are no longer working, so we must act,” said Maryse Rousseau, vice-president at the SFPQ’s national executive and its spokesperson on negotiations. “We know that mobilization will be difficult … but the people are ready to fight.”
The government has proposed a salary increase of two per cent per year, with a bonus in the third year for those at the bottom of the pay scale.
“The workers find this insulting,” Rousseau said. “It’s not like this that the government will retain its employees.”
The union is calling for at least 10 per cent over three years, to compensate for the increase in the cost of living.
“We’re tired of salary increases below inflation,” Rousseau said.
The average salary of the SFPQ’s 26,000 members is $38,000 to $40,000, she added.