More than half of education workers across Canada are members of CUPE. Cupe represents more than 138,000 people in elementary and secondary schools across Canada in every classification of the school system, except for teachers and executives – in more than 400 educational bargaining units. Sunday`s deal averted a nationwide strike that would have closed hundreds of schools on Monday. CUPE is also sending a message of solidarity to teachers, particularly with the announcement that Ontario primary school teachers have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a strike. „We have made progress because our communities have come together,“ Hahn said. „This is due to education workers and their allies who have participated in strike preparations, rallies, information pickets, public relations and labour disputes. As our teachers continue to negotiate to reverse cuts in education, our message to the Ford administration is that we will not confront each other. Together, we can stop budget cuts and strengthen the public education system to build the schools that all children deserve. Tens of thousands of education workers in Ontario will see a modest pay increase, job security and an unchanged absenteeism plan as part of an 11-hour agreement between the union union and Doug Ford`s government. From nearly 55,000 members in Ontario to 100 per cent of education workers in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island, CUPE`s education sector remains one of the strongest in Canada. We represent the full range of classifications of support staff in almost every province. CUPE/OSCBU is now focusing on the next steps and describes this agreement as an opportunity to keep the spotlight on the damage caused by chronic underfunding of Ontario`s public education system.
Education workers represented by CUPE in Ontario voted to ratify a central collective agreement to restore essential services to students and return 1,300 support staff positions to schools across the province. „While we are pleased to centrally ratify this agreement that provides security of services, this is just the beginning,“ Walton said. For example, the 1% pay increase was negotiated in the shadow of Bill 124, which would limit the salaries of public service employees in Ontario. „It doesn`t reflect what cupE members deserve,“ Walton said, „and we need to move forward when it comes to solving issues like violence in schools, including the epidemic of harassment that affects everyone in schools.“ „I am extremely proud to be in a union with workers and some of the communities that together have reversed the Ford Conservatives` deep cuts,“ said Fred Hahn, President of CUPE Ontario.