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    • 31 OCT 22
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    FSA Denounces Anti-Labour Ontario Legislation, Stands in Solidarity with our Colleagues

    FSA Denounces Anti-Labour Ontario Legislation, Stands in Solidarity with our Colleagues

    The FSA denounces Ontario government legislation undermining free and fair collective bargaining. We stand in solidarity with education workers, adding our voice to the chorus of opposition from the labour movement. On October 31, 2022, the provincial Ford government invoked the notwithstanding clause to introduce legislation that forces a four-year contract upon on CUPE workers (organized together as the Ontario School Board Council of Unions [OSBCU]), prevents job action, and restricts Charter Rights. This is first time in Canada that the clause has been used to pass labour legislation and the actions of the Ontario government could set a dangerous national precedent.

    The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT), our national affiliate organization, condemned the legislation earlier this afternoon. CAUT Executive Director David Robinson wrote that the “Ontario government’s legislation is an illegal, unconstitutional interference in the right to free collective bargaining and the right to strike.”

    In solidarity with CUPE, the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) walked away from the provincial bargaining table today. The Federation wrote that “the Ford government has chosen the most draconian manner of legislating away two fundamental rights protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms: the right to bargain collectively, and the right to strike… The Ford government has signalled it is uninterested in reaching collective agreements that are negotiated freely and fairly. And its oppressive use of the notwithstanding clause is another flagrant abuse of power—one that continues to attack democracy by trampling on Ontarians’ constitutional rights.”

    Of the contract itself, President of CUPE Ontario Fred Hahn said that “a half percent wage increase to an already-insulting offer isn’t generous. An additional 200 bucks in the pockets of workers earning 39K isn’t generous. It wouldn’t even be generous to accept our proposal – it would be necessary, reasonable, and affordable. It’s simply what’s needed in our schools.” Hahn added that CUPE Ontario will indemnify members against fines and that members plan to go on strike this Friday, November 4, regardless of the legislation.

    CUPE workers are seeking investments in student support and fairer wages for a group that averages less than $40,000 in annual salary.


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