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Librarians reach tentative agreement with Vancouver Island Regional Library

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Cynthia Egli pickets at the VIRL'’s Sidney branch on Resthaven Drive in March, after members of the B.C. General Employees’ Union began job action. ADRIAN LAM, TIMES COLONIST

The Vancouver Island Regional Library and the union representing its 48 librarians have reached a tentative agreement.

Job action that has seen librarians off the job and Island library branches behind picket lines on a rotating basis is on hold as the B.C. General Employees’ Union holds a ratification vote.

The tentative deal was reached on Monday. The employer recently announced it was calling back the mediator in hopes of restarting talks.

A date for the ratification vote has not yet been announced.

The library and the librarians had been unable to agree on wages. Rotating strikes started early last month throughout the system.

The system, mainly paid for by local municipalities and regional districts, covers a large area from Sooke to Sidney, north to Port Hardy, part of B.C.’s coast, and Haida Gwaii.

cjwilson@timescolonist.com