The Dryden Observer

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College strike begins as employer rejects faculty offer

Chris Marchand

Chris Marchand served as editor of the Dryden Observer from August 2009 to April 2018.

By Dryden Observer Staff

More than 12,000 Ontario public college faculty will be on the picket line rather than in their classrooms on Monday morning after talks between the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) and the College Employer Council failed to produce a tentative collective agreement.

A statement from Confederation College, which operates a satellite campus in Dryden advised ‘regional campuses and all Thunder Bay campus buildings will remain open unless otherwise notified. Reduced hours may be in effect and will be communicated in advance of any changes to operating hours.’

OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas called the current impasse “regrettable” but said college faculty have the full backing of the union’s 130,000 members and their $72 million strike fund.

“Our union has a track record of getting deals done without work stoppages,” he said. “Unfortunately, that has not happened in this case. Nonetheless, I encourage the colleges to get back to the table so we can wrap this up swiftly, for the good of students and faculty alike.”

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