“This isn’t the end of the struggle, but it’s one step closer to getting these workers what they deserve." — Marilou Martin, OPSEU's Chair of college support workers division
Toronto (13 Dec. 2016) — On December 9, in a rebuke of the College Employer Council's (CEC) delay tactics, the Ontario Divisional Court dismissed the CEC's application to overturn the Ontario Labour Relations Board's (OLRB) decision to hold a vote for part-time college workers in June.
The CEC had asked the court to set aside the ballots cast in June and order a new vote, an application that the Court denied.
Colleges still fighting part-time workers' right to collective bargaining
“We’re glad to see the Court support the right of the OLRB to make that decision,” said Warren (Smokey) Thomas, President of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/NUPGE). “It’s just a shame that these workers have had to wait 6 months already. And despite the ruling, these workers still face further delays, as the employer continues to throw up roadblocks in the way of getting their votes counted."
“For now, however, we’re just glad to see the court recognize the right of the folks at the OLRB to do their job.”
The application by the CEC last summer for a judicial review is just one of several attempts by the employer to delay or derail the OLRB process.
Part-time college workers looking to bargain for decent working conditions, equal pay, sick time
Marilou Martin, Chair of the union’s college support workers division, celebrated the decision as one step closer to representation for part-time workers at Ontario’s public colleges.
“These workers aren’t asking for a lot,” said Martin. “They just want decent working conditions, the right to take a day off when they’re sick, to get paid equally for doing equal work, and to be allowed to bargain together to get a fair deal from their employer."
“This isn’t the end of the struggle, but it’s one step closer to getting these workers what they deserve," Martin said.
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