OPSEU/NUPGE says the government’s decision to dump the joint task force is a denial of bargaining rights, and therefore a violation of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
“The fact our members overwhelmingly voted to join OPSEU/NUPGE in the largest organizing drive in Canadian history sends a strong message that times are changing. I hope this employer will work with us and make sure our members get a fair contract." — Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President
"Bill 178 return-to-work legislation violates rights and freedoms that workers have fought to win for more than a century. OPSEU/NUPGE is committed to protecting those hard-won rights.” — Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President
“It’s great that St. Lawrence students will get improved libraries, but it makes no sense that the college is robbing them of the expert guidance they need in order to get the most out of them.” — Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President
Thomas said it was “ironic, but not funny” that the government had passed Bill 148, which improves certain labour standards, “just a few days after it had walked all over the Charter rights of more than 12,000 workers.”
Back to work legislation would have been unnecessary and students would have been back in class faster if the College Employer Council had taken negotiations seriously.
“College presidents should get back to the bargaining table and settle this strike now before they do any more damage to a college system that students and our economy depend on.” — Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President
“It is hypocritical of the colleges, who promise students a good job and a bright future, to turn around and force thousands of contract staff into jobs with low pay, no benefits, and no job security of any kind.” — Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President
“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
“College faculty are committed to providing high-quality education for the hundreds of thousands of students who rely on Ontario colleges to prepare them for the rest of their lives. It’s time for management to listen to their expertise on how best to do that.” — OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas