From the Provincial Office of OSSTF
TORONTO, ON – May 25 2015 — The Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF/FEESO) is extremely disappointed that the Government of Ontario has decided to legislate an end to teacher and occasional teacher strikes at the Durham, Rainbow and Peel District School Boards.
“Nothing positive can ever come out of a legislated curtailment of a union’s fundamental right to bargain freely and to withdraw services when necessary,” said OSSTF/FEESO President Paul Elliott. “This government created the current bargaining process, and we have made every effort to make it work. It’s disappointing that the Premier and the Education Minister are so eager to subvert that process with legislation rather than roll up their sleeves and take an active role in helping to make the process work.”
Elliott continued, “It’s clear to us that the Minister’s decision to ask the Education Relations Commission for a recommendation was nothing more than political cover for a government that has no real commitment to the bargaining process. Like their predecessors who introduced Bill 115 in 2012, this Minister and this Premier would clearly rather legislate than negotiate.”
“We will continue to work for negotiated local agreements with all of the other school boards around the province, and for a fair, negotiated agreement at the central bargaining table. But this action by the government today has done nothing to help move negotiations forward,” Elliott concluded.
OSSTF/FEESO, founded in 1919, has 60,000 members across Ontario. They include public high school teachers, occasional teachers, educational assistants, continuing education teachers and instructors, early childhood educators, psychologists, secretaries, speech-language pathologists, social workers, plant support personnel, university support staff, and many others in education.
Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation
Toll Free: 1-800-267-7867