ETFO Rainbow locals to stage one-day strike on Monday December 17

TORONTO, Dec. 14, 2012 /CNW/ - Rainbow public elementary teachers, occasional teachers, and designated early childhood educators (DECEs) will stage a one-day strike this Monday December 17th 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 interference."

"We are taking this action to bring attention to Bill 115's rigid parameters, in the hope that we can move our discussions forward," said Barb Blasutti, president of the Rainbow Teacher Local. "The loss of local autonomy has forced us into strike action, and it is a direct result of this government's actions."

"Bill 115 has not only stripped teachers of their fundamental rights, it diminishes this province's democratic foundation. That's why we are taking a stand," added Val Duhaime, president of the Rainbow Occasional Teacher Local.

The locals moved into a legal strike position on December 10, 2012. They received no board reports through the conciliator appointed by the Ministry of Labour to resolve their bargaining impasse with Rainbow District School Board.  During a vote on September 24, 2012, the locals received overwhelming mandates for strike action from their members. 

Fast Facts:

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 Rainbow Teacher Local represents 610 elementary teachers employed by Rainbow District School Board. The Rainbow Occasional Teacher Local represents 358 Occasional Teachers. The Rainbow DECE Local represents 28 DECEs.

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:

Barb Blasutti, Rainbow Teacher Local President, 705-522-8320,
Val Duhaime, Rainbow Occasional Teacher Local President, 705-283-1212,

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Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario

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