“The legislation introduced in Ontario and invoking the notwithstanding clause are an attack on all working people in Canada. The National Union is strongly committed to supporting CUPE and OPSEU/SEFPO in their fight and to standing up against this attack.” — Bert Blundon, NUPGE President
Early Childhood Education
Early Childhood Educators (ECEs) provide an invaluable service to Canadian children and their families and to the future of our country. These dedicated workers help shape our children’s social, physical, emotional and cognitive development.
Unfortunately, these dedicated workers are subject to low wages, high levels of job insecurity, limited career opportunities and lack of recognition. For example, the earned income for an ECE is half of the national average. They are exposed to physically demanding work, poor physical environments, infectious diseases and stress.
The National Union has and will continue to advocate to ensure that ECEs are properly compensated and recognized for the work they perform.
"If these workers are so necessary that management says these students cannot attend school safely without their support, then why can’t Education Minister Becky Druhan simply pay them the same wage they’re being paid elsewhere in Nova Scotia?” — Sandra Mullen, NSGEU President
"It is time that the government and the employer show them how much they care about the work they do and the services they provide and come to the table with necessary improvements." — Sandra Mullen, NSGEU President
“Today, and every day, we say thank you to our members and other ECEs and child care workers for the important work you do. We see you, we appreciate you, and we will continue to advocate for you.” — Bert Blundon, NUPGE President
“The hope is that the employer will do the right thing and take the concessions off the table, so we can get a deal and our members can get back to caring for the children.” — Kyle Ross, MGEU President
"Completely absent from this budget is information on how the government will ensure that this Canada-wide system attracts and retains qualified early childhood educators (ECE) and other child care workers, who are the backbone of quality child care. Efforts to expand the child care system must involve strategies to expand the workforce, improve compensation and working conditions, and ensure decent work in the sector." — Larry Brown, NUPGE President
Now is the time for Ontario to come to an agreement with the federal government on the Canada-wide child care system and then get to work on improving accessibility, affordability, inclusivity, and quality. No more excuses.
"Our members continue to deliver public health care and social care services throughout the pandemic and other crises, and under extremely challenging circumstances. They have come to be seen as heroes. And they deserve this recognition and our thanks, but they also deserve decent work. That means investment in quality public and social services, which will benefit us all." — Larry Brown, NUPGE President
“Showing ECEs and child care workers the appreciation and support they deserve is more than a one-day event — it must be core to this system-building project. This includes fair wages and benefits, implementing strategies for training, recruitment, and retention, and giving workers the resources they need to do their jobs.” — Larry Brown, NUPGE President
"The need for a universal child care system has long been clear, and the pandemic made it more urgent than ever. We’ve seen growing public and political support during the pandemic. And today’s polling results show that voters are going to take this to the ballot box.” — Larry Brown, NUPGE President
“Throughout the election campaign you have been asked directly if you will cancel the child care agreements, and your response has been evasive. Given that child care is a key issue for so many Canadians, they deserve the respect of a definitive answer to this question.” — Larry Brown, NUPGE President
"With this important step forward, we expect to see other provinces and territories coming to the table to negotiate strong deals that lay the groundwork for a universally accessible, publicly funded and publicly managed, high-quality child care system that fairly compensates and supports the workforce." — Larry Brown, NUPGE President
"While it may not have been what the federal government intended, the way CEWS is set up effectively subsidizes privatization" — Bert Blundon, NUPGE Secretary-Treasurer
To ensure Canada recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic with minimal loss of life, and without leaving people behind, the federal government has an enormous role to play.
NUPGE Annual Report: 2020 in Review is a look back on what NUPGE accomplished in 2020.
86% of Canadians said it is important to them that all Canadian families have access to quality child care regardless of income. 84% of Canadians also said that access to affordable child care is essential for Canada’s economic prosperity.
A Canada-wide child care program would also create greater equality, boost regional and rural economic development, and bring long-term health and well-being benefits for future generations.
And what about the long list of workers that have been deemed essential during this pandemic? People who work in our grocery and convenience stores, at gas stations, or who provide food delivery. These are also the heroes we’re hearing about. Would you have seen them that way before the pandemic broke out?
We need to take care of ourselves especially now and a big part of being healthy means taking care of our mental health. Stress is a major factor in poor health. And for those who struggle with mental illness, depression, posttraumatic stress disorder, these times are especially difficult.
“A legislated raise limited to 1% comes to less than $8 a week, far less than the $60 a day the government is spinning through its propaganda machine doubling as our education minister. The government should abandon this cruel and ham-fisted legislation and get serious about bargaining right now." — Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President