Vancouver Art Gallery staff back to work with new agreement

The new four-year agreement comes after a week of strike action, and months of negotiations

Vancouver Art Gallery CUPE 15 workers are back at work after a week of strike action. | CUPE 15

Striking Vancouver Art Gallery employees are back at work today with a new four-year collective agreement in place.

Some 200 workers represented by the Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 15 (CUPE 15) voted on Monday (February 11) to ratify an agreement that features retroactive wage increases and excludes scheduling changes previously proposed by the gallery.

“The cumulative effect of these wage increases will see gallery workers’ paycheques increase by 4.75% in 2019, and a further 2% next year,” stated CUPE 15 president Warren Williams in a news release. 

The gallery's CUPE 15 workers will receive 1.5% pay bumps for 2017 and 2018. They will also receive wage increases of 1.75% in 2019 and 2% in 2020.

The new contract will retroactively begin July 1, 2017, when the previous collective agreement first expired.

The decision Monday ended a week of strike action that began Tuesday, February 5.

"We are so pleased that an amicable resolution was reached with CUPE 15, and we look forward to welcoming everyone back to the Gallery”, said Vancouver Art Gallery director Kathleen S. Bartels in a release. 

“We believe this four-year contract will keep the gallery on a path of collaboration, stability and future growth.”