Strike an inconvenience, say parents

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NORTH RIVER - A strike by custodians, school bus drivers and tradespeople in the Chignecto-Central Regional School Board is an inconvenience, say parents of students who are affected by the action.

Members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 3890 went on strike Monday morning after rejecting the board's latest offer on Sunday night.

The union's major issue is the contracting out of jobs.

"I think for me, because of the busing, it's a little bit of an inconvenience," said Annette Murphy, prior to picking her two children up at North River Elementary School on Monday. "But as a parent you do what you have to do."

Upper Brookside parent Nicole Oderkirk agreed the strike has had a negative impact.

"I currently have three smaller children that are napping right now, so I had to wake them up to come pick up the kids, so it kind of offsets the schedule of the whole day," she said.

"The whole thing just sucks ... I kind of think about what if I can't get up and take them to school, then they can't go, and stuff like that. It's an inconvenience where some people don't have vehicles, so then your kid stays home or misses school time."

Debbie Shute operates a local home daycare. She arrived at North River elementary to pick up children, who are normally bussed to her house, on Monday afternoon.

"It's a hundred per cent inconvenient. It's terrible," she said. "Hopefully, something will be resolved soon."

One parent who arrived at the school to pick up his son said he understands the union's position, but feels it's the students who suffer in the end.

"I appreciate what they're doing, as a government employee myself. Wages, contracts, it's all important," said the man who spoke on the condition of anonymity. "It's also important that my son or daughter gets to school on time. I had to leave work a little early to pick up my son. It's kind of an inconvenience for some, but hopefully it will be a short process and hopefully it will all work out in the end."

Another parent, who also didn't want his name published, said he too had to drop what he was doing on Monday to pick up his child, who normally buses to and from school.

"It is an inconvenience, but it is what it is," he said. "If I was there I would be right there with (the union). I can see where they're coming from. It will be over when it's over and I'll just continue to run my kid to school."

 

Organizations: Canadian Union of Public Employees, North River Elementary School

Geographic location: North River

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