Top: Protests against Bill 28 at Queen’s Park on November 7. (Catherine Jenkins)
Bottom: Mark Hancock, CUPE National President and Laura Walton, President, CUPE-Ontario School Board Council of Unions announce a return to the bargaining table. (CUPE Ontario)
After Premier Ford and Ontario Minister of Education Lecce announced and put in writing that Bill 28 would be repealed, CUPE has agreed to rescind their call for escalating protest and job actions. For those of you with children, the good news is that schools will be reopening soon, many as early as Tuesday.
CUPE’s 55,000 K-12 education workers are largely women and are some of the most precariously employed and poorly paid workers in the province. But as Mark Hancock, CUPE’s National President stated, “They took on the Ford government, and the government blinked.”
The Ontario government’s attempt at using legislation to override a union’s right to bargain freely has failed. Although no date has been set, both parties have agreed to return to the bargaining table and continue negotiations.
Recognizing the threat to all unions and free bargaining, representatives from some of Canada’s largest labour unions, including CUPE, OPSEU and Unifor, joined forces. Collectively, these unions represent millions of public and private sector workers who could shut down the province.
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