Officers join yellow strip protest

Some RCMP members, including Vernon members, join protest over pay dispute

photo submitted                                Some Vernon RCMP officers have joined colleagues in refusing to wear the yellow stripe on their pants as part of a protest over pay issues.

photo submitted Some Vernon RCMP officers have joined colleagues in refusing to wear the yellow stripe on their pants as part of a protest over pay issues.

Some Vernon RCMP members are joining colleagues in a protest over pay.

Several officers have chosen not to wear the famous yellow stripe on their pants, joining in with colleagues across the country who refuse to wear the stripe as a symbolic move to fight for improved wages.

One officer at the Vernon detachment said the move by colleagues “is a personal decision.”

Police are issued training gear that do not have stripes, and some Vernon officers are wearing those pants. Others have chosen to cover up the yellow stripe with a different colour.

A graphic produced by CBC Radio shows the entry-level salary for an RCMP officer at $50,674, compared to $68,443 for a Vancouver Police Department probationary constable.

After three years of service, the graphic shows an RCMP officer making $82,108 compared to $87,998 for the VPD.

Public Safety Canada announced a retroactive salary increase for the RCMP last week which includes a 1.25 per cent pay raise effective Jan. 1, 2015, the same increase as of Jan. 1, 2016 and a 2.3 per cent market adjustment effective April 1, 2016.

The National Police Federation has backed the RCMP and is moving ahead with trying to forge a union for RCMP members.