Overwhelming strike vote by Peel education workers: 98% vote YES!

TORONTO, Dec. 1, 2023 /CNW/ – OPSEU/SEFPO Local 2100 Educational Assistants (EAs), Early Childhood Educators (DECEs), and Child and Youth Care Practitioners (CYCPs) employed by the Peel District School Board (PDSB) have voted 98% in favour of strike action in response to their employer dragging their heels in bargaining. Almost 80% of the approximately 4,000 members in Local 2100 participated in the strike vote.

“I’m not the least bit surprised by these strike vote results,” said Melody Hurtubise, Local 2100 President and Bargaining Team Chair. “Peel EAs, DECEs, and CYCPs are sick of the disrespect our employer is showing not only at the bargaining table but in our workplaces every day. We are dangerously understaffed, under-resourced, and the employer refuses to address the violence in our schools, or even update our job descriptions.”

For the past seven months, the PDSB has refused to move in negotiations with the OPSEU/SEFPO Local 2100 bargaining team. Outstanding issues include safe staff-to-student ratios, better workloads, more workplace resources, health and safety measures, reasonable supervision times, working from home where possible, and updates to job descriptions.

“Our PDSB members are organized and determined to take on this employer,” said OPSEU/SEFPO President JP Hornick. “What this strike vote shows us is that these workers, most of whom are women and many of whom are racialized, are willing to fight to get the respect and the working conditions they deserve.”

Background information:

OPSEU/SEFPO education workers across Ontario are covered by the Ontario Council of Education Workers central collective agreement, which was ratified in January 2023 and covers central issues. Each OPSEU/SEFPO education worker bargaining unit also negotiates a local collective agreement with their own school board on local issues and working conditions – this is the bargaining that is happening right now with Local 2100 PDSB EAs, DECEs and CYCPs.  

SOURCE Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/SEFPO)