Rally at Queen's Park on Saturday April 6, 2019. (Photo via CUPE Ontario Facebook)Rally at Queen's Park on Saturday April 6, 2019. (Photo via CUPE Ontario Facebook)

OPSEU members to strike in solidarity with CUPE education workers

The Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) says the education workers it represents will also walk off the job on Friday in a show of solidarity with CUPE members.

CUPE announced on Wednesday its members will walk off the job until it gets a collectively bargained agreement with the Ontario government.  The union said it will pay any fines members face after the province tabled back-to-work legislation, imposing a four-year contract on the 55,000 workers.

In a statement released Thursday morning, OPSEU said its members will stage a provincewide protest against Bill 28, the Keeping Students in Class Act.  It calls the legislation an attack on workers' constitutional right to fair and free collective bargaining.

In a letter to members, President JP Hornick and First Vice-President/Treasurer Laurie Nancekivell assured OPSEU would support every education worker that does not go to work on Friday.

"Your union will have your back. You will not have to pay any fines. And you will have the full force of OPSEU/SEFPO behind you, should your employer attempt to enact any discipline," the letter said.

All are encouraged to join a CUPE picket. CUPE has said they will not picket schools, but instead will target the offices of local members of provincial parliament.

There is no word yet on how this latest development will affect local schools.

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