Union wants 11.7 per cent raise for Ontario education workers in bargaining proposal

TORONTO – A union representing Ontario education workers is asking the province for annual wage increases of $3.25 per hour – or 11.7 per cent – as the two sides hash out a new collective agreement.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees shared a summary bargaining proposals it submitted today as negotiations continue and contracts are due to expire at the end of this month.

The union that represents 55,000 workers including early childhood educators, school administration workers, bus drivers and custodians says inflation is expected to rise further and workers’ wages have been restricted over the last decade.

CUPE says an average wage for its members is currently $27.87, and wage increases for public sector workers have been stuck at one per cent annually due to a controversial government bill.

The government didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Other bargaining proposals from CUPE include asks for minimum weekly hours of work for full-time staff and minimum standards on vacation and leaves of absence, and funding to extend benefits to more workers.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 2, 2022.