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Members of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union gather outside the Royal Canadian Legion in Lower Sackville, N.S., as part of the Our Kids Can't Wait rally on April 10, 2024. (Jacob Moore/Acadia Broadcasting)

NSTU members vote 98% in favour of strike action

By Caitlin Snow Apr 11, 2024 | 8:43 PM

Ten thousand members of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union voted 98 per cent in favour of a strike, Thursday.

The union says the vote is a “resounding wake-up call” to the government after they hit a roadblock in negotiations with the province.

President Ryan Lutes says the vote is a push for the province to address issues in schools like violence, poor working conditions and teacher retention.

“Teachers are frustrated by rapidly declining conditions inside their schools, and by governments lack of action to provide safe and healthy learning environments.”

Lutes adds that teachers in Nova Scotia don’t want to be on strike, but if the government doesn’t address their concerns, then they will consider it.

Meanwhile, Minister of Education Becky Druhan says she is not surprised but instead “disappointed” by the results.

In an email to families, Druhan says the focus of the government remains on reaching a deal that supports educators and students.

“We all want what is best for Nova Scotia’s students. I believe the path to improving our education system is listening to staff who are on the ground and working with students everyday.”

Druhan adds that she’s joined more than 80 staff meetings, speaking to thousands of teachers to hear and act on their insight.

Druhan says Thursday’s vote does not mean there will be immediate strike action.

Bargaining is ongoing with the next meetings on April 15 and 16.