ETFO files unfair labour practice complaint against government, OPSBA

Union claims parties’ demands violate good faith duties
|labour-reporter.com|Last Updated: 09/30/2015

The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) filed an unfair labour practice complaint with the Ontario Labour Relations Board on Sept. 29.

The complaint accuses the provincial government and the Ontario Public School Boards’ Association (OPSBA) of refusing to bargain in good faith.

According to the union, the government and OPSBA have violated their obligation under the School Boards Collective Bargaining Act by setting parameters for continuing collective bargaining. The parties required the ETFO agree to elements of the recent memorandum of settlement with the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) in order to continue bargaining.

The union said this demand has violated the “good faith” duties imposed on all parties.

“The obstinacy of this government and OPSBA to try and impose a deal on ETFO members while refusing to continue negotiations has pushed us to take this action,” said ETFO president Sam Hammond.

“We have consistently said that ETFO would return to the table at any time to negotiate a fair and reasonable collective agreement that is specific for ETFO members.”

According to the union, the government and OPSBA abruptly left the table on Sept. 11 after seven days of bargaining. The union represents 78,000 elementary public school teachers, occasional teachers and educational professionals across Ontario.

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