1,700 unionized Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI) employees have left the job for the foreseeable future.

This includes staff in Portage la Praire who have taken to the streets following contract negotiations breaking down last week.

All MPI locations are closed, and all scheduled appointments are cancelled across the province as part of this MGEU (Manitoba Government and General Employees' Union) strike action.

MPI says that this walkout follows the union rejecting an enhanced four-year collective agreement worth 17 per cent in total monetary value and an offer to avoid strike action by going directly to voluntary arbitration.

While on the other side, MGEU notes that the 17 per cent "enhancement" is misleading as it includes benefits. 

The workers' contract with MPI ran out as of September 26, 2022.