Opening Statement



Thursday, 4 April 2013

OSSTF Presidents Approve Deal!

Latest News Updates + ETFO Reports follow!


How much better is this deal Ken?

The OSSTF Presidents approved a tentative agreement today by a 96.45% vote. It will now go to the membership for voting online between April 12 to the 18th, with results possibly be announced later that day. President Coran did not expect as high an approval rating from the members and noted it has been a hard time for everybody.

It was a nice sunny spring day. The long winter of discontent now seemingly drawn to a close. The media conference wasn't packed. Ken smiled and said his piece. Answered a few questions. It was over pretty quick with an unsettling sense of finality about it all. At least that's what I felt.

Ken explained there had been an additional 8 long days of bargaining, sometimes from between 15-20 hours a day. The process was respectful and a big change.

What are the big announcments? There are provisions for local bargaining. For example, unpaid days could be reduced to one or two so there isn't a pay cut and the students don't miss out on the benefits of our teacher PD. Apparently there are ways of restructuring PD so that those days can be reclaimed without financial cost to the government. Other no cost trade offs can be made between now and June 28th, but it was unclear which or what extent to me.

There will be new committees set up. One will monitor and resolve any disputes in implementing the new agreement. Another will look into setting up a teacher run health and benefits plan that OSSTF will now pioneer to provide more flexibility and cost savings for the members. Ken suggested the other affiliates could later be included in the process as well.

The new sick day plan seems at first brush to be the same as ETFO announced yesterday (see my blog). OECTA will now be alone with the MOU 3rd party adjudicator process. Watch for the Catholic school boards to go squirrely over that!

I'm looking at the sick day pay back formula. It's all pretzel logic to me and I don't see any clear numbers in the handout we've been given. You will recall the 25% figure was being bantered about by the MOE last weekend.The formula however refers to X/30 X Y/200 X Z/4.

Regulation 274; the OECTA MOU fair hiring clause can also be changed. Another committee will be struck to see how that can be done in a way that is agreeable to all the parties. Again, watch for the Catholic school boards to scream bloody murder.

There are improvements to maternity benefits that will be more sensitive to meet the women members needs.

There are job security clauses for the support workers and non teaching staff. Also a Voluntary Leave of Absence Plan, plus it looks like some sort of benefit for using less than 6 sick days in 2013/14. [?!]

No future grid changes will be implemented without consultation.

What to say? MOU redux? You know I'm a hardliner. I certainly wouldn't be dancing on my desk if I were an OSSTF member. It would seem they've just rejigged the concession bargaining terms in a perhaps more friendly way. Pasted a smiley face on it? However, you will be the ones to decide. How will you vote: Yes or no?


In the news! Can the media soon put this baby to bed???

Full video coverage of Ken Corans media conference @ Media speech +questions

Here's the OSSTF media release @ "Overwhelming"

Here's MOE Liz Sandal's media release @ pleased

The Toronto Star reports@ Toronto Star

The Globe + Mail reports @ Globe

CP24 reports @ CP24

Sudbury teachers get ready to vote starting on the 12th. The 25% sick day number is confimed here, otherwise not many more specific details than have all ready been made public. See: Sudbury

COMMENTS BELOW:

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

- improvements to a set of bad imposed terms, does not a good deal make …
- do we get to renew the full Aug 31 / 13 contract through free collective bargaining? NO
- do I get any compensation or use of the 225 sick days stolen from me (above the vested days)? NO
- will the court challenge continue, or did we surrender that?
- if the members approve this lousy deal and we continue with and win the court challenge, can the deal be reversed?

Count me in the VOTE NO camp.

I look forward to discussing this matter with our front line, dues paying members ……

Anonymous said...

I have read it several times. There are a few significant improvements. However, not enough for me to return to ECs or vote yes in a bizillion years. Absolutely no provision for the restoration of stolen property and that is a BIGGIE, still a paycut, no matter what and no full grid movement. KC said 96% of local pres voted yeah. They were probably drunk!

Anonymous said...

This OSSTF member is voting no. If it passes I am giving ever cent of my sick day payoff to the NDP war machine. Down with Wynne!

sam said...

Oecta deserves better

Anonymous said...

Better than what was negotiated by OECTA. This OSSTF member is voting yes.

Anonymous said...

I like to think I'm a reasonable person and at this point all I wanted was to be treated the same as everyone else in the union. But to let the govt STEAL 75%+ of the gratuities from members with less than ten years vested is shameful and for the union to accept it is disgraceful! We ALL pay dues and we ALL pay the provincial executive salaries. We all could have took 80% or additional unpaid days beyond one would have covered it. OSSTF just doesn't get it or maybe they do and don't care??? Most of them that negotiated this deal are on their way out. This will permanently divide the membership. I must vote NO.

BTW it looks like the govt has agreed that only one unpaid day will cover partial grid movement. David - next time you cross paths with Kevin or someone in your former provincial executive that negotiated to MOU (with an apparent combined negotiating experience of more than 200 year LMFAO)please ask them what thier combined grade level is in math??? I really hope your new exectuive is better at crunching numbers.

Anonymous said...

This osstf member is voting, Hell NO! I'd rather fight and have this pittance imposed than accept it. "Free collective bargaining", my foot! I'd rather vote no on principal than accept the few crumbs they moved from my right pocket into my wrong one. I hope we have the foresight to see the court challenge of bill 115 through to the end, otherwise a very dangerous precedent will have been set and it won't be long before the next government uses the same legislative tactics on another working segment of the population of our dear province. I urge you all to stand in solidarity with the rest of your fellow Ontarians against the undemocratic austerity measures of this government. Workers unite! Osstf members vote NO!

Anonymous said...

Bottom line is that in competition, if someone is willing to provide a similar service for less, than less becomes the normal. OECTA has agreed to work for less. There is nothing OSSTF could have done except mitigate the damage. Is it unfair? Yes..I am at 9 years and 290 sick days so I'm losing a ton, but there is no way I'm voting no to this. At least I'm getting something for my sick days. There is no alternative. There is no one out there to fight with.

Anonymous said...

I say yes. This is quite a bit better than the crap we were offered and turned down in November.

Anonymous said...

Osstf should thank oecta

Anonymous said...

So there is to be unpaid days to pay for grid advancement of young teachers.
Why was this very same idea shot down 20 years ago by Mobile Drive OSSTF Exec when the social contract was agreed? Teachers on the grid then lost: at most $15,000 least $2500.
Those on the grid then will always remember the devious and spiteful behaviour of the OSSTF Exec. Nothing was ever done to help those members out.

Time to re-read Animal Farm

Anonymous said...

The bully stole our bag of marbles(100) and now offers to give 25 of them back to some of our members. That's unfair to the majority who have no gratuity and it's unfair to those that have a gratuity. What about the superintendents who retire with a $10 000 per year of service gratuity this year. "Na touche pas". Principals all got raises in 2012. Ken Coran says we have assurances that the grid change will be discussed next time, not legislated. The very people that were at the Bill 115 table are giving him assurances? Fool me once, you're the fool. Fool me twice I'm the fool. If we vote yes to this contract we probably throw away the charter challenge and certainly open the door to more abuse in 2014. OSSTF members think about this. If we reject the contract what then. They might have to come back with further improvements. It's almost a given that Hudak will form the next government. Ontario citizens cannot forget ORNGE, gas plants, E-Health, an 11.4% increase in the sunshine list, an unprecedented stripping of workers rights (teachers) and a proroged government at a convenient time to escape legal issues. Surely to good God OSSTF members are not thinking of staying in bed with the OLP. You just got abused. I am retiring next year. I should be okay but watching our profession be abused and then accepting back just a small bit of what was gained is sad. I urge you to vote no and watch the wheels fall off the Liberal train. They have to go. The perfect scenario would be a minority PC government that can't do anything. It would also destroy the Fiberals as it did federally. It's your profession now folks. I did my part over the past 29 years. What will you choose to do?

Anonymous said...

What does a twacher teaching 15 years get????
Young teachers get a buyout on sick days....what do iget

Anonymous said...

The OSSTF improvements are modest. The biggest change is the improvement to the Short Term Disability Sick Leave Plan. This is significant. Having said that Laurel Broten and Dalton McGuinty still Bob Rae'd us.

Anonymous said...

I know what OSSTF SAID this would do for members but I don't know whether I believe them or not. It sounded logical, but . . . This whole experience has made me even more cynical about what information I get from OSSTF. I know that young members are furious at this "consolation prize" and I can't blame them. This year has been very depressing on so many levels. As I reread this I think I will have to vote "No".

Anonymous said...

Yes - OSSTF should thank OECTA for breaking solidarity and getting us all in this mess What a joke. ONe school system.

Anonymous said...

What does a teacher with a board that has no gratuity get? Looks an awful lot like nothing or am I missing something? A grand fathering in of some of these measures seems like it would be far more palatable.

Anonymous said...

Yes OECTA disappointed its own members with its July 5th fiasco. The OECTA AGM fixed many of those problems. Maybe its time for OSSTF members to stop blamming Catholic teachers and look at the problems in their own house.

We will NEVER accept One School System. So we can fight each other and undermine publicly funded education or we can work together and build it.

Anonymous said...

OSSTF compares bad bill 115 deal with moderately improved bad deal2 ... the proper comparison is 08-12 Collective Agreement and bad deal2 ... we have lost greatly ... and we have not been able to renew our contract through full, fair and free collective bargaining VOTE NO .... and sent the "A" team to fight in court for our right to renew our last contract through free collective bargaining ..... let the government impose these terms and hope the court rules them illegal and demands the contract be renewed via collective bargaining .... even if in the end we lose, our self-repect and solidarity will remain intact ....

Anonymous said...

"NEVER accept one school system"? Will that mantra continue in future negotiations? Easy club for the goverment to swing when they want OECTA to undermine other federations to settle for less. I wonder how your Catholic collegues felt in BC, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, New Foundland, ... oh wait! Better hope the province doesn't hold a referendum... I am just saying...

Anonymous said...

Hey david ... what does a teacher with 15 years get

David Chiarelli said...

Ithink you'd get a grandfathered gratuity up to the original max and lose any sick days above and beyond that amount.

David Chiarelli said...

For what it's worth, I am in OECTA and was/ have been opposed to the MOU. If we were still out like OSSTF I'd vote no. There's some movement but it's still a concession deal. Remember, the Wynne OLP needs a deal.

Anonymous said...

As I said before OECTA dealt with its problems; its time for OSSTF to deal with its own. As for the past OECTA members have been on the picket line since 1997 more than all the other federations combined. Once again we will NEVER accept one school system. BTW here are the facts on the other provinces:

BC -never had RC Ed rights and funds private schools with taxpayer $
AB - has publicly funded RC education
SK - has publicly funded RC education
MB - Supreme Court of Canada ruled it had to fund RC schools; this decision was overturned by the unelected British House of Lords; today MB funds private schools with taxpayer $
ON - has publicly funded RC education
QC - Protestants not Catholics held the minority rights in this province. These rights were converted to English rights with the full consent of the Protestant community. QC now funds private schools with taxpayer $ and public teacher salaries are $20k lower than in Ontario.
NB,PE,NS - never had RC minority rights when they entered confederation.
NL - pre-1990's there were NO secular schools in NL; they had school systems for RC's, United, Anglican, Salvation Army, Seventh Day Adventist, and Pentecostal. This is the ONLY province that held a referendum as there were NO minority rights at stake. Today NL has one public system and also many private schools which had never existed before in the history of the province/nation/colony.
NW,YK - has publicly funded RC education
NU - never had minority schools but their public schools are hardly secular
Most of the Commonwealth - has publicly funded RC education
Most of Western Europe - has publicly funded RC education
USA, France, Cuba, Communist China - no funding of ANY minority rights in these intollerant states

Orangemen and Secularists have been fighting against RC minority rights in Ontario for 180 years, so we are used to fighting and prepared to fight again. I would rather however, work with my secular school sisters and brothers to fight for teacher rights, student rights, a better Canada, and a better world.

David Chiarelli said...

It has been my concern since OECTA broke solidarity on July 5 with the other affiliates that the Catholic school issue would be greatly exacerbated, especially at the grassroots level. Solidarity comes at a cost and cuts both ways. We are seeing the negative fall out now.
Anything that divides the union movement and makes it turn inward upon itself during a struggle like we are in now with the province can only cost all of us dearly.

Anonymous said...

http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/Poll+shows+Christy+Clark+tied+least+popular+premier/8211583/story.html

BC NDP leader and Ontario NDP leader share same favourability rating. One is poised to become premier. Could the other be far behind?

Anonymous said...

Well said David. We all need to stick together.

Anonymous said...

Hey Dasvid

What does a teacher with 26 years who works for a board with no gratuity in place get in this deal??

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