CUPE has rejected an invitation by Finance Minister Tom Osborne to return to the bargaining table and is now taking aim at the deal recently reached with NAPE.

Brian Farewell of CUPE says the government was not willing to negotiate about language in a sidebar letter which guarantees the no-layoff clause will not roll over into the next contract. Osborne says it’s the exact same language to which NAPE agreed, but CUPE argues the letter applies to their entire contract, not just the no-layoff clause. Farewell says there is no point in returning to the table as long as the government holds firm on the letter.

Farewell also raised questions about how the recent deal was reached with NAPE. He says the sidebar letter was not included in the ratification process with NAPE members, but was added afterwards.

NAPE would not comment on Farewell’s allegations because it won’t get involved in another union’s contract talks.