Potential for Job Action at Sudbury's Catholic Secondary Schools

Local Talks Hit Impasse

SUDBURY, ON, April 19, 2016 /CNW/ - Negotiations on a local agreement between the Sudbury Catholic District School Board and its secondary school teachers hit a wall on Friday as the appointed Ministry of Labour conciliation officer, Diane Bull, was unable to assist the parties in coming to an agreement. 

The Catholic secondary teachers requested the aid of a conciliation officer in early March after negotiations with the school board, undertaken since November, failed to produce a local agreement. At the conclusion of the conciliator-assisted talks last Friday, the Catholic secondary teachers requested a "No Board" report, which indicates the parties are unable to reach an agreement. If the parties do not reconvene and reach a settlement, job action may be taken as early as May 9, 2016.

Early last week, the school board reached a tentative agreement with its elementary teachers after the parties overcame major obstacles. "We are facing many of the same bargaining positions in our negotiations as our elementary counterparts faced," says Dan Charbonneau, President of the Sudbury Secondary Unit of the Ontario English Catholic Teachers' Association (OECTA). "Unfortunately, our team was given an ultimatum that it had to agree to concessions in order to get the same agreement." 

"We are disappointed that the board has taken a position that has stifled further negotiation. Fifty-three out of 75 local OECTA units have been able to reach local agreements," adds Charbonneau. "It is our sincere desire to reach an agreement without job action, but it may be necessary to protect our members from expanded management rights and further job losses."

A locally negotiated agreement is the second part of the teachers' collective agreement. It accompanies the provincially negotiated 2014–2017 central agreement, ratified by the OECTA, the Ontario Catholic School Trustees' Association, and the Government of Ontario.

The Sudbury Secondary Unit of OECTA represents 152 members in four Catholic secondary schools and one adult education school in the Sudbury area.

SOURCE Ontario English Catholic Teachers' Association

For further information: Dan Charbonneau, President, Sudbury Secondary Unit, OECTA, 706-521-0839, oectasec@eastlink.ca

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