It’s official. All schools across Trillium Lakeland District School Board (TLDSB) will be closed on Friday, November 4 and it’s not clear for how long.
Education workers represented by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) will walk off the job, despite legislation passed by the province today, November 3, making it illegal for the estimated 55,000 education workers to strike. Bill 28, Keeping Students in Class Act, 2022 also imposes a four-year contract on the workers which at TLDSB includes educational assistants, secretaries, clerks, computer technicians, and custodial and maintenance staff.
Mediation talks between CUPE and the Ontario government failed to reach a deal.
It is not yet clear how long the job action will last. In a release on the evening of Wednesday, November 2, TLDSB director of education Wes Hahn stated that “the CUPE members at TLDSB are vital to supporting student supervision and safety. Without these individuals, TLDSB cannot safely operate schools for students.”
Education Minister Stephen Lecce issued a statement on November 3 and said CUPE left the Province no choice but to pass the Keeping Students in Class Act.
“It’s disappointing that we got here. All along we had hoped to reach an agreement that’s right for students, right for parents, right for workers and right for taxpayers. But CUPE wouldn’t budge. They refused to take a strike off the table. I want to make something very clear. If CUPE continues with their strike, they will be breaking the law,” he stated.
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