“Right now, our contracting out language saves people, but this new language is a step forward because it gives us an opportunity to save the work and save the jobs. That’s not only good for current staff, but for the next generation of workers as well." — Janice Hagan, chair of OPSEU's College Support Division
Toronto (30 Aug. 2017) — Support staff at Ontario’s 24 public colleges have ratified a 4-year extension to their collective agreement, extending it to August 31, 2022.
Number one bargaining demand — contracting out — addressed in contract extension
In voting on August 29, 75 per cent of members of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/NUPGE) backed the deal, which includes a 7.75 per cent wage increase over the 4 years plus improvements to drug coverage, leave provisions, and contracting out language.
“I’m really excited about the contracting out provisions in the new agreement,” said Janice Hagan, chair of the 10,000-strong College Support Division of OPSEU/NUPGE. “Right now, our contracting out language saves people, but this new language is a step forward because it gives us an opportunity to save the work and save the jobs. That’s not only good for current staff, but for the next generation of workers as well."
“Stopping contracting out has been our number one bargaining demand for 20 years,” Hagan said. “This is the first improvement to contracting out language in all that time, and I want to thank members for supporting it.”
OPSEU/NUPGE to focus on fighting privatizaiton in college services
Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President, congratulated the members in the College Support Division on the new contract and pledged the union’s support in helping members make the most of the new contracting out language.
“Right now, we are already backing the We Own It campaign, which I believe is the biggest anti-privatization campaign in Canadian history,” Thomas said. “This new collective agreement opens a door that will allow us to pour all the energy of that campaign into stopping the privatization of college services."
Thomas concluded, “I’m looking forward to seeing our members mobilizing to keep their work in the public sector — where it belongs."
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 370,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. ~ NUPGE