End in sight for college strike
By Sue Tiffin
Published Nov. 17, 2017
Ontario’s longest college strike is coming to an end.
Eighty-seven per cent of striking faculty rejected the latest college offer on Nov. 16, prompting the Ontario government to table back-to-work legislation in an effort to get faculty and students back into the classroom after five weeks of strike.
More than 12,000 faculty and 500,000 students have been affected by the strike, which began Oct. 16. OPSEU, representing staff at 24 public colleges in Ontario, and the College Employer Council, which bargains on behalf of the province’s colleges, have been unable to reach an agreement on key issues that include protecting full-time jobs, outsourcing, salaries, job security and academic freedom.
A class-action lawsuit has begun on behalf of students looking for tuition and fee refunds.
Colleges are taking different approaches to ensuring students don’t lose their semester, with some extending the semester and offering longer schedules, online components and Saturday classes.
Students at Fleming College in Haliburton can access updates at flemingcollege.ca/faculty-labour-negotiations or by calling 705-749-5550.