Actions by education workers at PC Convention will send message to Doug Ford: Keep decent work laws and $15 minimum wage

TORONTO, Nov. 16, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- An action will be held at the PC convention in protest of the Progressive Conservative Party’s continuing actions to reduce workers’ rights in Ontario.

Since taking office, Doug Ford and the Progressive Conservative Party have made cuts to social assistance, cancelled important health curriculum, and are planning to take away basic workplace rights that workers won in the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act of 2017, including the upcoming increase to a $15 minimum wage, by passing Bill 47.

This action is being organized by the Durham teachers local of the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) in collaboration with the Ontario Federation of Labour and community groups across Ontario.

Educators and allies will be in solidarity to protect two paid sick days and a $15 minimum wage for students and parents across Ontario, rights that 77% of Ontarians support.

“As education professionals we see the harsh impact poverty has on children when families live paycheque to paycheque. ETFO adds its voice to the majority of what Ontarians already support and with the WE the People Action, we are sending a message to this government to withdraw Bill 47 and invest in public services,” said ETFO President Sam Hammond. “The attack on paid sick days and a $15 minimum wage is unjust, it’s unfair and quite honestly, it’s a petty way to punish workers for an illness or sick kids.”

“I teach in the Durham region. I see kids coming to class sick because their parents are precariously employed and they can’t stay home to get better. I see how families are struggling to make ends meet and it hurts the students and it hurts their ability to learn,” said Angie Inglis, elementary teacher in Whitby, Ontario. “The Ford government needs to withdraw Bill 47 for the sake of the people of Ontario.”

“The labour movement across Ontario is here for this action at the PC Convention to send the message the government of Ontario must ensure decent work laws and the January 1, 2019 increase to a $15 minimum wage,” said Ontario Federation of Labour Secretary-Treasurer Patty Coates. “We know that low wages and precarious work has a negative effect on students’ learning, hurts the health of Ontarians, and pushes people into poverty. This government must withdraw Bill 47.”

Action information:
Place: Congress Centre, 650 Dixon Road (Meet on the grass between Dixon Road and City View Lane)
Time: November 16, 2018 5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Speakers to include:
Patty Coates – Secretary Treasurer, Ontario Federation of Labour
Natalie Mehra – Executive Director, Ontario Health Coalition
Navneet (Navi) Ajula – Fight for $15 and Fairness campaign, former temporary agency worker

For further information, please contact:

Meagan Perry
Director of Communications,
Ontario Federation of Labour l 416-894-3456