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Stop Disrespecting Public Sector Workers
Respect pour les travailleurs et travailleuses du secteur public

November 2, 2022

Stop Disrespecting Public Sector Workers and Get Back to the Table!

NDP Health critic France Gélinas (Nickel Belt) questioned the Minister of Education on the Ford government’s pattern of disrespecting public sector fields, especially those dominated by women.

“We are joined today by members of OSSTF and OPSEU, including medical laboratory technologists, teachers, social workers, educational assistants, early childhood educators and many other essential workers. They are calling for immediate action to respect all those public sector workers. Premier, will you listen to those professionals and other unionized public sector workers; withdraw Bill 28 and go back to the bargaining table with CUPE?”

The Ford PC government tabled legislation Monday that would impose a contract on Ontario’s education support workers and ban their right to legally strike. If passed, the bill would invoke the Constitution’s notwithstanding clause to eliminate the rights to collectively bargain and strike for the first time in Canada.

Gélinas continued “This government has established a pattern of disrespecting and devaluing public sector workers. We are seeing it in health care, and we are seeing it in education. They seem to have a particular disdain for sectors dominated by women workers. We have seen it with the devastating impact of this government’s low-wage policy – Bill 124.

Education workers and health care workers are exhausted, demoralized and leaving their jobs. Yet the government continues to deny what they and many other people want, this government to respect their Charter of Rights and Freedoms. They want them to go back, talk to CUPE, get an agreement that nobody likes—you won’t like it; CUPE won’t like it—but everybody can live with. Will you withdraw Bill 28 and go back to the negotiation table?”