Education Workers Confront Ford Government

Education Workers Confront Ford Government

Education workers in Ontario represented by the Ontario School Boards Council of Unions (OSBCU) took their demands directly to government Members of Provincial Parliament in Ontario last week to make their voices heard.

In Etobicoke on October 22 a large rally was held outside of PC Party of Ontario’s annual convention where it’s MPPs and party members gathered. There, OSBCU President Laura Walton spoke to the crowd that this action is about workers using their voice. “We are the people of Ontario and we are using our voice,” she said pointing out that the unions demand to raise wages is a demand for all workers in Ontario to make a wage that does not put them in poverty. She called on everyone to take the message back to their co-workers in all sectors so that this fight is the fight of all working people in Ontario. In a most shameful display of arrogance which fools no one about who defends the well-being of students, Education Minister Stephen Lecce is reported to have said of the rally that the union is “reminding us all that they will impose greater hardship on children, following historic learning loss and mental health adversity.”

Education workers rally outside PC convention.
OSBCU President Laura Walton speaks to rally at PC Party of Ontario annual convention in Etobicoke on October 22, 2022.

On Friday October 21 the day previous, education workers in Windsor held a rally outside of a local elementary school and then marched to the Windsor-Tecumseh PC MPP Andrew Dowie’s office across the street. Before the march a representative of the workers spoke to the crowd and explained the deteriorating conditions in the schools and the necessity for proper funding and supports for the students in schools and the workers, like her who provide the education. A high school teacher then spoke to the crowd pointing out that for teachers this is one fight with education workers and it is not about supporting them. He pointed out that the Ford government is preparing to use force to attack education workers and it is incumbent on everyone to make plans now to stand as one force when this happens.

Education workers rally outside of Windsor-Tecumseh MPP Andrew Dowie’s office in Windsor, Ontario.