OSSTF/FEESO Disappointed By OLRB Decision

Secondary school teachers at Manitoulin Secondary School take to the picket line outside the school Monday morning. The job action is part of a rolling series of strikes that is escalating as talks with the province drag on.

TORONTO, ON–(Marketwired – May 26, 2015) – The Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF/FEESO) is disappointed with the ruling issued today by the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB), which stated that the withdrawal of services by teachers in the Durham, Rainbow and Peel District School Boards was unlawful. In his ruling, OLRB Chair Bernard Fishbein stated that elements of the strikes by OSSTF/FEESO contravened the School Boards Collective Bargaining Act.

“We will comply with the ruling of the OLRB and our members will be back at work tomorrow,” said Paul Elliott, President of OSSTF/FEESO. “However, this ruling does not change the fact that our members have grown increasingly frustrated by the lack of progress at both the local and central bargaining tables. If these school boards had just made an honest effort to engage in meaningful negotiations at their local bargaining tables, there would have been no strike and no need for a hearing.”

“We will be assessing all aspects of the OLRB ruling and its implications,” continued Elliott. “However, this ruling will in no way impact our resolve to protect the working conditions of OSSTF/FEESO members and the learning conditions of our students. We will continue to work for fair collective agreements for OSSTF/FEESO members everywhere in the province.”

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.