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BRANTFORD, Ont. Getting grade eight students to answer phones in schools will not end the Grand Erie District School Board strike, said the boards striking office, clerical and technical workers. The over 300 workers, on strike over job security since Friday, April 8th, are represented by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).

We are on strike to protect our jobs, said Brenda Savoie, president of CUPE 5100. We understand the board is getting students, educational assistants and others to answer the school phones. Not only is this an insult to our members, but to the students, parents and this community. The only way this strike will end is for management to drop concession demands on our job security.

An evening meeting with the employer on April 8th ended without any resolution on the issue of job security. Management is determined to get concessions on job security language that will make it easier for them to lay off our members, some of whom have been working and serving this community for over 25 years. Layoffs will have a negative impact on the services that we offer to the children, our schools and the community.

We are encouraging residents in our communities to call their school trustees and urge them to abandon their concession demands and end this strike by offering us a deal that we can accept, said Savoie. Union representatives are scheduled to meet again with the employer on Thursday, April 14th.


For further information, please contact:

Brenda Savoie, President CUPE 5100 - 519-752-3286

Bridget Pridham, CUPE National Representative - 905-575-5411

James Chai, CUPE Communications - 416-292-3999