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Teachers aides in Sydney, Nova Scotia are fighting back after receiving gag orders from their employer. Several TAs have received disciplinary letters for writing letters to the editor about cuts to their hours of work. The school board is threatening further disciplinary action if the TAs continue to denounce their employer publicly.

Arming themselves with a Federal Court ruling on whistleblowers right to speak, and wearing gags, the members of CUPE Local 5050 are holding silent protests in front of the school board offices. As well as asserting their right to speak, the TAs are standing up for the students right to quality education.

Cutting teachers aides by half an hour per day is cutting 2.5 hours of learning per week from those children who rely on their aides to interpret classroom instruction for them, says CUPE rep Barb Kowalski.

The local is hoping their issues will be on the lips of the public when municipal and school board candidates go door to door this month.