With a strike looming of Canadian Union of Public Employees which includes Ontario education workers such as custodians, early childhood educators and school administration staff after a 96.5 per cent vote in favour of a strike Minister of Education, Stephen Lecce, issued the following statement.
“While these results are not surprising given that education unions have voted to hold strikes against families for nearly five decades, we are still extremely disappointed with the results. CUPE is charging ahead with a strike while demanding nearly 50 per cent in increased compensation after two difficult years of pandemic disruptions for students.”
Lecce added that, “As CUPE moves ahead towards a strike that hurts kids and disrupts families — leaving behind a reasonable offer that also protects the most generous benefits and pension plan in the country — we will continue to remain at the table to make sure kids stay in class without interruption right through to June.”
The government has offered raises of two per cent a year for workers making less than $40,000 and 1.25 per cent for all other workers. CUPE however, is looking for annual increases of 11.7 per cent, five additional paid days before the start of the school year, 30 minutes of paid preparation time each day, and increasing overtime pay.
All five major Education Unions had their contracts expire on August 31st which puts them in a bargaining position.