Union presidents attack Ontario government for deal with Catholic teachers

By John Bonnar, posted July 7, 2012 at Rabble.ca

“’This agreement ensures Ontario’s Catholic education system will continue to provide an exceptional learning environment for our students while achieving desired outcomes for our members and addressing the government’s fiscal concerns.’

But Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario president Fred Hahn, has grave concerns about how this agreement will affect students in classrooms across the province.

CUPE represents 55,000 school board support workers in every elementary and high school as well as Catholic and French language schools in Ontario.

‘Any attempt to force this agreement on other workers in this sector would be a mistake that the government should not make,’ said Hahn during Friday’s press conference at the Sheraton Hotel in Toronto.

His members have proposed alternative ways to achieve savings and efficiencies without gutting collective agreements.

‘(But) the government is not prepared to listen to creative ideas. They’re only interested in their own parameters.’

School boards across Ontario have already announced hundreds of layoffs, with more planned in the future.

‘The Liberals cannot say that they are protecting our education system when they are removing millions of dollars from it,’ he said.

‘Without the teachers, secretaries, custodians, instructors, education assistants, the food service workers and the bus drivers there is no education system.’”

Read more: http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/johnbon/2012/07/union-presidents-attack-ontario-government-deal-catholic-teachers

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