Burnaby, B.C. – Food and beverage workers at Nanaimo Golf Club have voted 85% in favor of authorizing a strike in response to non-productive negotiations with the Club. The two dozen servers, cooks, bartenders, dishwashers and janitors, members of UNITE HERE Local 40, served 72 hour strike notice to the Club on Tuesday, April 21, 2015.
Clubhouse staff – some of whom have worked at the Club for over a decade – are seeking to improve access to medical coverage and dental benefits, improve wages, instate a retirement benefit and to ensure that new employees receive adequate entry-level wages.
The Club has refused to expand eligibility for staff to obtain medical coverage or offer better dental benefits. The Club is offering workers increases worth less than 1% in the first year and has even threatened to take away employees’ meal benefit. When the Club was asked to reconsider, the Club offered a limited meal benefit of merely soup and bread.
The Golf Club recently invested $4 million to replace its old clubhouse with a 23,000 square foot facility with an expanded restaurant, lounge, banquet halls and locker room facilities for members and guests.
“The Club has invested millions of dollars into their new clubhouse. Food and beverage workers want to know why the Club isn’t investing in its staff,” said Shelly Ervin, Local 40 negotiator. “We know members and guests appreciate the service our members provide. However, the staff is quite disappointed with the Club’s current approach to negotiations,” said Ervin.