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CUPE to Minister Flaherty: Do the math!

School boards across the country spend hundreds of millions of dollars a year on GST costs. That’s money that cannot be spent on textbooks or equipment or anything else schools desperately need. At our national convention in October 2006, a resolution was adopted calling on our union to lobby the federal government for a 100% GST rebate for all public schools. We are calling on Minister Flaherty to make sure the GST is applied fairly and transparently.

International RSI Awareness Day

Wednesday, February 28, 2007 is International Repetitive Strain Injuries Awareness Day. Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSIs) are the most common type of workplace injury in Canada, and the incident rate is climbing every year. Across Canada 2.3 million people, or one in every 10 adults, suffer from these injuries also known as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). They include a number of disorders that affect muscles, tendons, nerves and joints.

RSI Day is an opportunity to promote injury prevention and raise awareness about the prevalence of RSIs and their effects. Workers forced to do monotonous, repetitive jobs, who work too long or too fast without enough breaks, are affected by RSIs. Poor work organization (unnecessary overtime, cutbacks and layoffs, substandard equipment, lack of worker control) contributes to RSIs.

Durham educational assistants push for better school supports

Educational assistants (EAs) with the Durham District School Board (DDSB) are urging local trustees and the board administration to make education for special needs students and safe workplaces for EAs a priority. CUPE is calling on this board administration to actively join with us to publicly advocate for better funding for special education rather than fight the EAs at the bargaining table.

No good news for children in the BC Budget

Housing and funding increase announcements in this year’s provincial budget mask spending cuts on childcare services and the fact that inflation nullifies increases in other areas. Funding for early childhood development, childcare and support to children with special needs will see a reduction of $105.4 million this year. And, despite government promises that pay increases will be fully funded, in sectors such as education, a 2.3 per cent increase will not even cover inflation plus wages and benefits.

No plan for health care in BC budget

The BC Liberal government’s refusal to make long-term investments to support health care in the province’s growing communities undermines innovation and spells more uncertainty in the year ahead. BC’s health authorities have had average funding increases of about 3.75 per cent since 2001, well short of what’s required to address population growth and inflationary pressures.

Ottawa a mid-to-low spender on community services

The City of Ottawa is in danger of becoming a “does not” municipality that does not adequately fund its community programs while lagging behind the rest of the province. Where Ottawa stands: a comparison of municipal spending levels across Ontario takes a broad view of the 2007 city budget by looking at how Ottawa compares to other municipalities in Ontario. Ottawa has already driven down administrative costs per capita, but in six of the other nine areas, it falls into the low or mid range of spending levels.

FastFacts in your inbox!

Did you know you can get FastFacts by email? To sign up for this service, please send an email to clandry@cupe.ca. Make sure to include your name, local number, email address and province. If you were receiving FastFacts by fax, also include your fax number so that we may delete your name from the fax list.

Special days:

February 28th - Repetitive Strain Injury Awareness Day.