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Education Minister Expresses Disappointment

By Randy Thoms Nov 17, 2022 | 6:11 AM

Ontario’s Education Minister is expressing his disappointment with CUPE strike call.

The union representing education workers has set a strike date of Monday if it can’t reach a deal with the province.

Workers walked off the job on November 4 before returning to work four days later when the Premier agreed to repeal Bill 28, setting the stage for a resumption of talks.

Stephen Lecce says the government put forward numerous offers on the table since.

“The question is, why are we here? We did everything we said we would to workers at CUPE to get a deal that keeps kids in school. We are absolutely committed to a fair deal. We’re going to stay at the table. I urge the union to call off this needless strike. Work with the government. Let’s get a deal that keeps kids in the classroom,” says Lecce.

Lecce says the government has agreed to a flat rate across the board wage while adding $335 million to address the union’s demands.

He says their proposals come with no concessions.

“All we ask is that kids stay in school. We think they need to be in school after the disruptions of the pandemic, of recent strikes. This should not be something that is done in this province ever so casually—strikes every few weeks. Kids deserve to be in school.”

Later taking to Twitter, Lecce outlined the government’s offers stating the government fulfilled its end of the deal by putting forward significantly improved offers, but were all rejected by CUPE.

“I urge the union to stay at the table. Let’s get a deal that’s fair for the workers and keeps kids in the classroom in this province.”


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