Striking Canadian Blood Services workers get some mainland support

Nova Scotia union travels to Charlottetown for rally

Brian McInnis
Published on January 30, 2016

Striking Canadian Blood Service workers and their supporters rally in front of the cenotaph Saturday.

©Guardian photo by Brian McInnis

Striking Canadian Blood Services workers held a rally at the cenotaph in Charlottetown Saturday and had the support of 35 members of the Nova Scotia Union of Public and Private Employees who travelled to the Island to lend a hand.

There were also members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees and donors, who know the striking local employees through donating blood, at the rally. Local 19 of NSUPE, which represents the strikers, have eight members and six were at the rally.

The blood services employees, who are all part-time workers, have been walking the picket line for almost five months. Talks broke off in December and there is no indication when they will resume.

The strikers say they want guaranteed minimum hours and the benefits that go with them.

As the strikers and their supporters stood in the snow in front of the cenotaph, they waved placards and shouted slogans. Many passing motorists honked their horns, which brought loud cheers.

In an earlier interview with The Guardian, striker Leanne Voutour said, “we wouldn’t have stood out here for 136 days if we didn’t love our jobs. We love working here. This is where we want to be and we’re fighting to get what we think we deserve.”