Martin Coiteux doesn't give the impression he's very interested in negotiating with workers in the public sector. Despite the fact that the Common Front has significantly lowered its demand on pay it seems clear to me that the chair of the Conseil du trésor had already written his speech before he even met with the Common Front.
What's the most upsetting in all this is the speed with which the government invests large amounts in a private company for a high-risk project at the same time as it is loath to invest in public services. Our government of bankers and businessmen should remember that it is responsible for managing for the common good -- period!
A few days ago, this email popped into my mailbox. I have reproduced it in its entirety here, but I have withheld the name
B.C. Education Minister Peter Fassbender has decided that because about 10 per cent of all B.C. students were identified as having special needs last year, only 10 per cent of students in B.C. schools have special needs. But in fact, the number is a great deal higher that.
Blame generally does not help resolve issues, and it is a poor platform to negotiate from regardless of the issue. Blame is not going to help us get our children back in school, nor is it going to assist us in dealing with the reality that is about to hit.
Stuffed into the 309-page Conservative budget implementation act, Bill C-4, that was tabled last month, are a slew of drastic changes to the federal labour relations system, which will affect the health and safety provisions, human rights protections, and collective bargaining rights of federal workers. As its number suggests, Bill C-4 is truly explosive.
Elevator workers are a silent army that keeps our province moving by ensuring that the 50,000 elevators in workplaces, apartments, hotels, hospitals and schools are running smoothly and safely. On May 1, 1,400 elevator maintenance workers were forced on strike by their employer, the National Elevator Escalator Association (NEEA). While these workers are off the job there is a significant safety concern for the public.
The looming LCBO strike threat has suddenly gotten all sorts of Ontarians anxious about a potentially dry next few days (or weeks). LCBO workers, who are represented by the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU), voted 95 per cent in favour of striking, and the deadline is approaching. Yet a strike is in no one's best interests. Now, this entire scenario would change if the availability of alcohol were to be completely diminished. This inconvenience may cause citizens to want an alternative to the LCBO in the event it is rendered incapable by a strike.
Whatever happens in Quebec happens in Quebec; it is beyond our control here in Ontario. What is alarming however, is that, as of this past weekend, Ontario students have begun to petition to bring the movement to their province. And all in the name of that often-used, deflated word "solidarity." This would be disastrous.
Workers are universally loved (or at least they get some rhetorical "props") when they're downtrodden, but the moment they have the gall to look beyond their "place," they're met with a wave of righteous indignation: Who do they think they are, anyway?