TORONTO, Dec. 15, 2012 /CNW/ - Durham public elementary teachers,
occasional teachers, and designated early childhood educators (DECEs)
will stage a one-day strike this Tuesday December 18 to continue
sending the government a message that Bill 115 is severely impeding
local collective bargaining.
"To date, the education minister has yet to do anything to assist local
school boards in pursuing fair and respectful negotiations with our
members," said Sam Hammond, president of the Elementary Teachers'
Federation of Ontario (ETFO). "She can end the chaos she has created by
repealing Bill 115 and letting local bargaining proceed without
"Our members are going to take a pause in hopes that the minister will
rethink her approach, which is having such a destructive effect," said
Gerard O'Neill, president of the Durham Teacher Local. "She needs to
restore local autonomy so that the school board and our local can get
on with the business of deciding what's best for our classrooms."
"Our members are appalled that this government is using a big stick
called Bill 115 instead of allowing fair and respectful discussions at
the local level," added George Taylor, president of Durham Occasional
"We're taking a stand for our members and all working people. If our
rights can be taken away without having the opportunity to reach our
first collective agreement locally, then Ontarians have to ask
themselves who is next," said Rayna Barrese, president of the Durham
During a vote on September 19, 2012, the locals received overwhelming
mandates for strike action from their members. The locals moved into a
legal strike position on December 10, 2012. Prior to that, they
received no board reports through the conciliator appointed by the
Ministry of Labour to resolve their bargaining impasse with Durham
District School Board.
ETFO is the professional and protective organization representing over
76,000 teachers, occasional teachers, and education professionals
employed in the public elementary schools of Ontario.
ETFO Durham Teacher Local represents 2,869 elementary teachers employed
by Durham District School Board. The Durham Occasional Teacher Local
represents 763 Occasional Teachers and the DECE Local represents 167
Collective agreements for all ETFO locals expired on August 31, 2012.
Since then, ETFO members have been working without collective
agreements in place.
SOURCE: Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario
For further information:
Gerard O'Neill, Durham Teacher Local, 905-447-8204, firstname.lastname@example.org
George Taylor, Durham Occasional Teacher Local, 905-404-0411, email@example.com
Rayna Barrese, Durham DECE Local, 289-356-5302, firstname.lastname@example.org