TORONTO, Jan. 17, 2019 /CNW/ - Thoughtless cuts to post-secondary education by Ford's PC government threaten workers on campus and attack students' access to education.
In an announcement on Thursday, January 17, the provincial government shared a plan of cuts to funding for colleges and universities. The announcement included:
- A guaranteed 4 percent cut to institutional funding;
- A reduction in non-repayable grants and an increase in access to debt;
- An attack on independent students' unions' ability to represent and service their members;
- The elimination of the 6-month grace period for loan repayment.
"Ontario's colleges and universities need increased investment to deliver high quality, public post secondary education. The PC's slight of hand won't work here. Today's announcement is a cut, plain and simple," said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President.
Unifor is in support of fully-accessible, public post-secondary education. The union is also concerned that the announcement includes a direct attack on students' unions.
"Students' unions are democratic, independent organizations that provide vital services and advocacy for all members," said Naureen Rizvi, Unifor Ontario Regional Director. "We have seen Ford's strategy at work before: if you don't like your opposition then silence it. This autocratic attack on students is cynical and obvious."
Workers on Ontario's campuses are already subject to precarious, low wage jobs, and privatization of the public service they deliver. Workers are united with students in their fight for accessible high-quality education.
Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad, and strives to create progressive change for a better future.
For further information: contact Sarah McCue, Unifor National Communications Representative at 416-458-3307 (cell) or [email protected]