The territorial government and Northwest Territories Teachers’ Association (NWTTA) said on Monday they are beginning negotiations toward a new collective agreement.
In a joint statement, the two parties said those negotiations “can be difficult under ideal conditions” but would this year take place in an “unprecedented and challenging time.”
Nevertheless, the two said, they were “optimistic that by working together in good faith, a fair and reasonable agreement will be reached that will balance the interests of both parties.”
Like past agreements, this one is expected to affected around 450 members who work for the South Slave, Dehcho, Beaufort Delta, and Sahtu Divisional Education Councils, as well as for the Commission scolaire francophone and Tłı̨chǫ Community Services Agency.
The first round of negotiations will run from May 17 to 21. Neither party will be able to comment publicly on the negotiations while they are taking place, the news release stated.
The current one-year agreement is set to expire on July 31 but will remain in force until a new agreement is reached.
Last year’s agreement saw NWTTA members receive a 2.5-percent wage increase, a $450 increase to the basic dollar amount used to calculate northern living allowances for teachers, increased allowances for principals and assistant principals, improved maternity and parental leave, and domestic violence leave.