BARRIE, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 28, 2012) - The Office and Clerical Bargaining Unit of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF/FEESO) District 17, Simcoe has voted 84% in favour of a strike mandate.
The contract between OSSTF/FEESO and the local Catholic school board expired on August 31, and the taking of a strike vote is a normal part of the legal process recognized by the Ontario Labour Relations Act (OLRA).
"Our members want a collective agreement with their employer," said OSSTF/FEESO Vice President Paul Elliott. "This vote is reflective of the frustration our members feel in regards to the continued interference by the provincial government. The vote is another attempt to follow the steps as outlined in the OLRA and work toward a negotiated agreement. The passage of Bill 115 by the McGuinty government was unnecessary and has only made the process of negotiating an agreement that much more difficult and frustrating."
"I'm very pleased with the strong mandate shown by our office and clerical members," said Suzanne, Conley-Cholak President of the OSSTF/FEESO District 17 Office and Clerical Bargaining Unit. "Our members are very frustrated and angry that this government has shown a lack of respect for support staff workers and the important role they play in the education system. Our members are very professional and dedicated and deserve the respect of this government not its disdain."
OSSTF/FEESO, founded in 1919, has 60,000 members across Ontario. They include public high school teachers, occasional teachers, educational assistants, continuing education teachers and instructors, early childhood educators, psychologists, secretaries, speech-language pathologists, social workers, plant support personnel, university support staff, and many others in education.