Rally for Rights and Democracy Jan 26th!

Photo of rally:

Now is not the time to lose hope.  Rather, we have to strengthen our resolve.  A Bill 115 rally is being held on January 16th at Jim Bradley's office, from 3:00pm to 5:00pm, and at the Ontario Liberal leadership convention on January 26th.  This isn't just a fight for our contract anymore, it's a fight to keep the rights granted to us under Canada's Constitution.

PDF of event callout.

PDF of Event Flyer (En Francais)

#J26Rally on Twitter


St. Catharines 10:30 am
CAW 199, 124 Bunting Rd.

Port Colborne, 9:45 am
USW, 87 Clarence St

Welland 10:15 am
950 E Main St (park on west side)

Fort Erie 9:45 am
194 Garrison Rd (old Zellers)

Niagara Falls 10:15 am
Casino Lot #1 off Stanley Avenue, southwest
corner of Stanley Avenue and 420 Highway

Grimsby 11:00 am
Southwest quadrant Casablanca/QEW at Gateway Niagara

To reserve a spot, please contact:
Dan Peat at 905-933-1889 or email at nrlc.clc@gmail.com
Bruce Allen at 905-934-6233 or email at ballen@cogeco.ca

Protest cancelled, OLRB ruled against ETFO

The Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) has ruled that the Political Protest scheduled to take place on January 11, 2013 violates the Ontario Labour Relations Act (OLRA).

ETFO will abide by the decision of the OLRB. We respect the provisions of the Act – something we have requested the Minister and government to do for almost a year.

Monitor the school board website to determine if your school will be open for teachers, DECE, ESP, and PSP members.

If you are called to teach or are on LTO, and the school is open to staff, you are required to report to your school or worksite on Friday morning.  Check dsbn.org to see if schools will be open.

Details at ControlYourFuture.ca

Political Protest Friday January 11th

In December 2012, ETFO members voted overwhelmingly in support of a one day political protest if the Minister of Education imposed a collective agreement or stopped a legal strike.

On January 3, 2013, two weeks after refusing an offer made by President Hammond to work toward a respectful resolution, the Minister used the unprecedented powers of Bill 115 to impose local agreements. By imposing contracts without negotiation and ending legal strike action, the Minister has willfully trampled on the democratic rights of ETFO members - rights that are enshrined in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Based on the Minister's deliberate and provocative choice to wipe out the democratic rights of tens of thousands of educators, the date of the one day political protest will be Friday, January 11, 2013.

All members will be receiving further information about the one day protest (times, locations) on Thursday, January 10th from their local office. In the meantime, ETFO members are asked to check ETFO's Control Your Future website (www.controlyourfuture.ca) on Thursday afternoon and evening for general updates.

Throughout these troubling months, ETFO members have recognized that it is impossible to stand back and watch the destruction of a profession we love and the trampling of rights that are fundamental to all Ontarians. We have demonstrated, over and over again, tremendous resolve, leadership and solidarity in the face of continual attacks by this government and Minister. Through this one-day political protest on Friday, January 11th we are again standing up to say that what happened to ETFO members must not ever happen to any other Ontarian.

Niagara Occasional Teachers are advised to picket with their colleagues at the elementary school of their choice from 9 am till 11 am.  Schools will be closed throughout the entire day.

Update:  The Ontario Labour Relations Board ruled against ETFO and characterized our plans to exercise our freedom of peaceful assembly as an illegal strike.  ETFO will abide by the decision of the OLRB, and as such the protest is cancelled.

Contracts imposed...

The Minister of Education has exercised powers she gave herself under Bill 115 to impose contracts (though "contract" probably isn't the right word, as a contract is agreed to by two parties) on all education workers.

More information on what these "contracts" contain is here.  They're supposed to last for two years, although the legitimacy of those "contracts" is certainly in question.  It appears that all bargaining efforts specific to our Local issues are dead in the water.

After exercising powers which blatantly violate rights granted by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Minister also announced she will repeal Bill 115 by Order In Council before the end of the month.  So, after violating rights granted to us by the highest law in the land, she's now trying to burn traces of the Bill that allowed her to "legally" do that; she's trying to stymie the legal challenges to Bill 115 that would have resulted in it being overturned, and is trying to avoid being held accountable by the Supreme Court of Canada.

Please read the Message to ETFO Members that's posted on controlyourfuture.ca by President Hammond.

As any/more information becomes available, we'll make it available here.  For the time being ETFO members should continue to push the pause button on voluntary activities.