TORONTO, Dec. 5, 2012 /CNW/ - A solid majority of public elementary
teachers across Ontario have voted in favour of a one-day political
protest in the event that the Minister of Education uses draconian
provisions of Bill 115 to shut down legal strikes or impose a
"ETFO teachers, occasional teachers, education support personnel,
professional support personnel, and designated early childhood
educators are saying they will lead the protest against Bill 115 if the
education minister denies them their fundamental rights," said Sam
Hammond, President of the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario
Ninety-two percent (92%) of over 46,000 members who cast a ballot voted
in favour of a one-day political protest. Voting was conducted online
from December 2-4.
"This vote affirms once again that it is our members who determine their
actions through democratic processes, contrary to Minister Broten's
derogatory comments about union leaders this week," added Hammond. "It
is unfortunate that her government crafted a law that allows no
judicial appeal in the provincial courts - a tactic rarely if ever used
in democracies. Our members have been left with little recourse but to
choose a political protest."
"Bill 115 is an affront to the fundamental rights not only of educators
but of all Ontarians. By this vote, our members are saying they are
prepared to stand up for democracy."
The law gives the education minister unprecedented powers to end a legal
strike, approve all collective agreements, or impose a collective
agreement. It also imposes strict, and impossible, parameters to
achieve fair collective agreements at the local level.
Earlier this fall, ETFO members voted to approve strike action by
majorities of 92% to 100% if local agreements could not be reached. As
a result, many ETFO members are currently engaged in work-to-rule
strikes. Details of one-day strikes to start in school boards next
week will be announced shortly.
The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents 76,000
elementary public school teachers and education professionals across
the province and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.
SOURCE: Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario
For further information:
Valerie Dugale, ETFO Media Relations- Cell: 416-948-0195, email@example.com