On November 12, Premier Blaine Higgs held a press conference announcing he was prepared to quell further strikes by offering CUPE workers a pizza party.
“We are prepared to meet CUPE halfway and offer workers a pizza party. And not just any pizza party. A Greco pizza party,” Higgs announced. “We will even order Hawaiian pizza, if they so choose, alongside the Atlantic favourite — donair pizza.”
This comes after ANBL workers voted overwhelmingly to strike with 97.7% in favour.
Premier Higgs looked down at the pizza in his hand and continued. “This is our best offer so far and during these difficult times, we all need a little more Greco pizza in our lives.”
The Brunswickan’s own Sharkie was in attendance during the question period and was able to get a question in: “Can you explain to the public how you think offering a pizza party as a counteroffer is even remotely acceptable and confirm whether or not you’re currently on something?”
“No. I am not ‘on something,’” Higgs replied, while miming air quotes. “And any New Brunswicker can crunch the numbers and see that the cumulative cost of throwing a wicked pizza party would more than make up the 20 percent back-pay they were looking for. Fair is fair. We’re square.”
Another reporter asked Higgs if he had any idea how many workers were striking and if they were getting a discount in order to supply Greco for the 20,000 plus strikers since the provincial government cannot even fund the resources necessary for New Brunswickers to meet their basic human needs.
Higgs yelled, “FREE FLAVOURED CRUST!” and ran out of the room.
There was an audible gasp from onlookers and a few chuckles could be heard. Dominic Cardy, the Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development, stepped up to the podium.
“The future of our children hangs in the balance here. This has gone on far too long and we strongly urge CUPE to accept the offer at hand. I mean, it’s Greco for crying out loud,” Cardy said while slamming his fist on the podium.
An insider has informed The Brunswickan that there are rumours circulating that if CUPE accepts this offer, Higgs is considering ditching paycheques altogether and will begin phasing out money in place of slices of pizza as financial compensation for all public sector workers in New Brunswick.
Never has there been a more bizarre turn of events than Higgs’ pizza party offer in the history of strike bargaining. Does the PC government really believe that Greco pizza makes up for their measly 1.7% wage “increase” over the next 5 years? Greco may be good but it ain’t that good.