February 2005 / Volume 3
to the Employer” Campaign
Well done! More than 300 “Letters to the Employer” were received at QPAT from our schools. This is a very high rate of return. Union reps and teachers
are to be commended for such an excellent response.
The letters are being deposited
at the anglophone negotiation table … and are producing a reaction. The
CPNCA is responding in writing to each school rep. Not unexpectedly, the employer’s rhetoric is neither accurate nor helpful. However
the important thing is that our message is getting through loud and clear.
As of the end of January, the
anglophone teacher table had met 25 times. The francophone teacher table has
met more often (around 40 times) and all the other groups in the education sector (support staffs, professionals, and Cegep
employees) have met less often. Despite all these negotiation sessions, no significant
movement has been recorded anywhere. The issue of course
is not one of number of meetings. Until the employer representatives receive
appropriate mandates (i.e. new monies) from the Treasury Board, very little progress will occur at any table.
QPAT Action Plan
To put further pressure on the
government, QPAT and the local unions are preparing an action plan that will include publicity, appeals to school boards and
MNA’s as well as teacher-driven work action at the school level.
The thrust of this mobilisation
is to force the government to recognize that all is not well in the schools of Quebec.
Much needed improvements are long overdue. Our demands in this round of
negotiatons reflect real problems and suggest appropriate solutions. We now need to convince the government to negotiate seriously.
Don’t believe everything
that is reported by the media. As negotiations unfold for the 400 000 or so employees
of the public and parapublic sectors, many different work actions will be undertaken by various unions. The media has been known to report inaccurately who is doing what.
(Before Christmas, Gaspé teachers heard from their local CBC of their impending day of strike … actually planned
only for the local CEGEP!). Don’t hesitate to call your union office to
clarify the latest rumour that might be going around.
In keeping with our democratic
practices, any “heavy” job action will have to be approved by a vote of the membership of each local union.