Fracking and wages: public sector union strikes at 24 Ontario colleges

The Ontario Public Service Employees Union’s Faculties Working Together union has agreed to step up job action at Ontario’s 24 public colleges.

“We’re putting students on the front lines,” Joel Harden, the union’s co-chair, said Friday evening.

The unions, whose members include instructors, librarians, counsellors, nurses and administration staff, have been campaigning for higher wages and better working conditions since August. Negotiations broke down in December and at the time of writing, job action was set to start on Monday.

During the past four months, the universities and colleges have made a number of concessions, including offering a number of raises. Last week, the Colleges Employer Council offered 3% pay raises over three years to most employees. They were able to achieve this deal partly through a change in the regulatory accreditation process.

About 10% of the faculty will walk out Monday.

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