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After an unprecedented meeting of close to 1,000 Ontario CUPE members and staff last week, the Canadian Union of Public Employees adopted a clear resolution  and plan of action that sets out a mandate for the union’s discussions with the Ontario Government that started this week at the Royal York Hotel.

Speaking to an audience of government officials, employer and union representatives, CUPE Ontario President Fred Hahn, and CUPE National President Paul Moist both made strong opening statements on Monday August 30th that made clear the will of our membership – that for CUPE bargaining rights rest with our local unions and the purpose of our participation in these discussions is to present an alternative economic analysis to government, and to talk about better ways to protect and strengthen public services and reduce the deficit.

Toby Sanger, CUPE’s economist, did the union proud with a strong presentation on our alternative economic analysis.  CUPE was well prepared, professional and clear in our communication of the will of the membership.

CUPE’s representatives to these government talks, some 50 strong, including Provincial and National Leaders, elected sector chairs, vice-chairs, staff coordinators and researchers, the Ontario Council of Hospital Union (OCHU) Executive and senior staff from the region have begun discussion by sector on issues important to all Ontarians, like the expansion and full funding of the Early Learning Program that begins this fall, about which a recent report said for every dollar spent on this program there is an economic benefit equal to $2.42 for our economy.

As of today, September 2nd, discussions continue and we will keep our locals and members updated.