PARK CITY, Utah. — Members of the Park City Ski Patrol are holding a second educational rally this morning on Main Street to express solidarity with their union, which meets with Vail Resorts today as part of ongoing contract negotiations. The mountain’s patrol unit has worked without a contract since New Year’s Day. Park City Mountain’s Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Mike Goar said he will join today’s meeting, but patrollers reiterated their request for an impartial mediator.
“While we’re pleased that someone from Vail of Mike Goar’s stature has finally joined negotiations, it is still our position that a neutral, professional mediator, trained and provided by the federal government at no cost to either party, is the best option to move these talks forward,” said Cressa Pratt, spokesperson for the Park City Professional Ski Patrol Association, in a statement.
“I have had the opportunity to talk to many of our patrollers over the last few weeks about their concerns,” Goar said after the meeting. “As a former ski patroller myself, I respect and deeply appreciate everything they do for our operations – especially in year as a challenging as this one. Now that we are well into the season with much of our preparations for COVID-19 behind us, I have been able to join the bargaining sessions with our ski patrol’s union, including a productive session today and another scheduled for next week, and feel confident both sides are working together in good faith to make progress while ensuring we provide our guests with a successful season.”
On Jan. 16, Park City Ski Patrol organized its first educational rally on Lowell Ave. holding signs that read ‘not on strike, just practicing’ and called for advanced training and education, increased sick time, and wages commensurate with other first responders who they said are taking extra risks by working during a pandemic.
“We’re taking these actions today on Main Street to ask our customers and our neighbors in this community to tell Vail that they value their professional ski patrollers, and that they count on us to keep them safe and that we need the resources and support to be able to so,” Pratt said.
The Communications Workers of America represents Local 7781, which includes ski patrols at Park City, Crested Butte, Steamboat, Telluride, and Stevens Pass.
This is a developing story.