Statement by Bea Bruske: Ford’s use of notwithstanding clause is a full-on violation of workers’ rights

November 3, 2022

Bea Bruske, President of the Canadian Labour Congress, released the following statement in solidarity with Ontario’s education professionals’ right to strike.

TORONTO – Canada’s unions stand in solidarity with the 55,000 CUPE Ontario School Boards Council of Unions (OSBCU) education workers – early childhood educators, custodians, maintenance and library workers, secretaries, educational assistants, IT professionals – asking for a fair collective bargaining process, decent work for workers and quality education for kids, and exercising their democratic right to strike.

Every family in Ontario relies on these essential education workers. Schools across the province depend on them to function. They are the backbone of our education system and they deserve to be treated as such.

Make no mistake: Doug Ford is not on the side of workers. What we are seeing in Ontario is the continuation of an alarming trend by the Ford government. Ford will always prefer to legislate than to negotiate, further oppressing workers’ rights. This is not a problem that will go away with strikebreaking legislation and it’s certainly not the last we will see of these bully tactics by the Ford government.

An attack on them is an attack on every worker in the province. With this diabolical legislation, Ford is signalling that he will come after each and every one of us – which is why we must stand together in solidarity.

Canada’s unions are sending a clear message: the labour movement is united in this fight and we will not back down.

Solidarity pickets are happening across the province on November 4th. Locations can be found here.

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