Dedicated workers from the Children’s Aid Society of the District of Nipissing and Parry Sound were locked out of their jobs on December 23.

By putting your name to the letter below, you can let these workers know that you support their efforts to protect services for children, youth and families at risk.

Letter:

I’m writing to express my support for the locked-out workers of Nipissing and Parry Sound Children’s Aid Society (CAS), as well as my dismay at the society’s actions.

Dedicated frontline, administrative and support staff have been locked out by their employer because they refuse to compromise over the quality of services they provide – services that keep children and youth safe in northern communities.

Workers want to address the workplace issues that are hurting child protection services in the region. They have been trying for many months to deal with these issues through collective bargaining.

But Nipissing and Parry Sound CAS has chosen to put at risk the very people the society serves: first by refusing to negotiate a fair agreement that protects services, and now by locking out workers just before the holiday season – long recognized as an especially stressful time for vulnerable families.

At the same time, the workers of Nipissing and Parry Sound CAS know that their lockout is a part of wider pattern of labour disruption at children’s aid societies in Ontario; 2016 also saw strikes by CAS workers in Guelph and Wellington County and in Peel.

It’s no coincidence that this unrest comes after six years of stagnant funding for children’s aid societies in Ontario; Nipissing and Parry Sound CAS itself is carrying a deficit of nearly $3 million.

The locked-out workers of Nipissing and Parry Sound CAS know that the quality of services they provide and their ability to keep children safe in their communities can’t be divorced from the severe financial pressures on children’s aid societies across the province.

I am proud to stand with these brave and principled workers in their determination that the children, youth and families in their care don’t pay the price for provincial underfunding.

Sincerely,

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Your message of support for CUPE 2049 members will be sent to

  • Gisèle Hébert, Executive Director, Nipissing and Parry Sound CAS
  • Joe Rogers, President, Board of Directors, Nipissing and Parry Sound CAS
  • The Hon. Michael Coteau, Minister for Children and Youth Services
  • Irwin Elman, Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth
  • Vic Fedeli MPP Nipissing
  • Norm Miller MPP Parry Sound – Muskoka
  • Monique Taylor MPP & NDP Critic for Children and Youth Services
  • Sylvia Jones MPP & PC Critic for Children and Youth Services
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