Ontario college strike possible - Macleans.ca

Ontario college strike possible

8,000 support staff could walk out Sept. 1

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Ontario college students could get an extra-long summer break if support staff strike Sept. 1.

The contract for 8,000 Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) members will expire that day.

Rod Bemister, chair of the union’s bargaining team, warned in a press release on Friday that “students should be very aware that the start of the school year will be jeopardized as long as college management refuses to negotiate seriously.”

He said employees are working to protect the pay and benefits they have accrued in previous contracts. Under the expiring collective agreement, employees who had worked full-time for more than one year are paid between $18.27 and $44.91 per hour.

The College Employer Council, negotiating for management, hasn’t released a statement.*

The two sides will meet again Tuesday.

An earlier version incorrectly named Colleges Ontario as the management-side negotiators.