TORONTO, Dec. 4, 2012 /CNW/ - ETFO Avon Maitland Teacher Local and ETFO Avon Maitland Occasional Teacher Local have received no board reports through the conciliator appointed by the Ministry of Labour to resolve their bargaining impasse with Avon Maitland District School Board. As a result, the two locals have begun work-to-rule as of December 3, 2012.
Local bargaining stalled following the passage in September of Bill 115, which has imposed drastic cuts to ETFO members' collective agreements and attacks their democratic rights.
"The Minister of Education has shown an absolute disregard for fair collective bargaining with the imposition of Bill 115," said Sam Hammond, President of the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario. "We were very clear that we would bargain locally but the terms that Bill 115 imposes has made that impossible."
"There is no way that we could engage in fair and productive negotiations at the local level given the restrictive parameters that the Minister has dictated through Bill 115," said Merlin Leis, President of ETFO Avon-Maitland Teacher Local. "My members are appalled that their democratic rights to collectively bargain have been removed by this government."
"We are determined to achieve a fair collective agreement and if job action to expedite the process is the only option then my members will take it," added Kim Finlayson, President of the Avon Maitland Occasional Teacher Local.
During a vote on October 3, 2012, both locals received overwhelming mandates for strike action from their members. The Ontario Labour Relations Act requires that a strike mandate and a no board report must be received, and 16 days must pass following the receipt of the no board report, before legal strike action can occur.
The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario (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 Avon Maitland Local represents 618 elementary teachers employed by Avon Maitland District School Board. Avon Maitland Occasional Teacher Local represents almost 295 Occasional Teachers employed by the Board.
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:
Valerie Dugale, ETFO Media Relations - Cell: 416-948-0195, [email protected]