The New Brunswick Federation of Labour (NBFL) says it is standing in solidarity with over 55,000 CUPE members in Ontario schools.
In a release, the organization says the Ontario School Boards Council of Unions (OSBCU) is fighting back against “draconian legislation” tabled by the provincial government.
NBFL President Daniel Legere says if passed, this legislation would violate workers’ rights protected by the constitution and impose an unfair contract on workers.
“The use of the notwithstanding clause to override collective bargaining rights is unprecedented, and an attack on the rights of workers, not just in Ontario, but across Canada,” he said.
Legere said the right to join a union, participate in collective bargaining, and strike is essential and needs to be protected.
“The NBFL is watching what is happening in Ontario very closely. Other anti-worker governments, like the Blaine Higgs’s Conservatives, could launch a similar attack on public sector workers.”
Around 55,000 education workers hit the picket lines on Friday. Those protesting include custodians, secretaries, early childhood educators, educational assistants and IT professionals.
The federation says these workers are the lowest-paid education workers, earning around $39,000 a year.
“The Ontario government needs to stop bullying workers, drop this legislation and return to the bargaining table with a fair deal for Ontario education workers,” said Legere.