This blogwriter is very saddened to learn from the OECTA Metro 7 [M7] that co founding member + union activist Joe Palumbo died in a coma on Saturday March 15th. Joe was actively involved with the unofficial pro democracy group's OLRB MOU complaint. Joe was also a staff rep at Chaminade CSS here in Toronto.
We commemorate Joe's passing remembering the strong independent stand he + the group had to take at the time, both locally and at the provincial level. They stood up immediately + publicly for all our OECTA members who were unequivocally opposed to the MOU. Joe did so in a timely manner without reservation for his and our uncomprimising union beliefs. One hopes our brothers + sisters in OSSTF and ETFO understand and appreciate Joe's work with the M7 to oppose the MOU and will also share in our grief, thoughts or prayers for Joe and his family.
Special thanks to the M7's Pamela Spearn for sharing this sad information with us. Joe was a union fighter. He was a part of the essential + often thankless OECTA underground fight against the MOU. Joe deserves praise + recognition for his contribution. Thank you Joe for standing up forcefully for our members' democratic rights!
Joe's viewing will be at the Jerret Funeral Home, 1141 St. Clair Ave West Toronto @ 2-4 + 7-9 pm this Thursday and Friday, March 21-22. The mass will be 10 am Saturday March 23 @ St. Clare Catholic Church.
For more detail + to send flowers + messages go to: Joe
The Metro 7 Manifesto: Metro 7 Speak Out!
Nov 25 OLRB hearing: Nov 25 Minutes 1
More Metro 7 Minutes: Nov 25 Minutes 2
Feb. 5 Hearing: 2nd MOU OLRB Hearing
OLRB MOU Comlaint Ruling: OLRB Ruling
Complainants' Legal Response: Indie Legal Brief
The Metro 7 Reply: Quo Vadis: Where is OECTA Heading?
Why are the Metro 7 significant? They "lost" their OLRB MOU complaint on a legal technicality. It would have been great if they and the other local units [Halton Elementary, York, Ottawa, Sudbury Elementary] had won. Still they took a stand, challenged the arbitrary ratification vote, and helped make the issues known. The members + units involved were an important vanguard in fighting 4 more democracy, transparency + solidarity when many OECTA members, as well as those from the other affiliates felt betrayed. We will examine the new member ratification process that has since been approved at OECTA AGM 2013. Their legacy is in having spoken out right away after July 5th without hesitation + in no uncertain terms. We all are indebted in part to Joe for that courageous stand, in what should have been a no brainer from the get go.
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