meet with Minister, OPSEU, CEC
Two weeks in and the strike is still at the top of everyone’s mind.
On Thursday, October 16th IGNITE President, Maja Jocson along with presidents from 7 other student associations across Ontario met with key stakeholders to bring forth student concerns.
The group first met with government officials: Chief of Staff, Paris Semansky and Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development, Deb Matthews. They then met with OPSEU Chair of Bargaining, JP Hornick and CEC Chair of Bargaining, Sonia Del Missier.
Outcome of the meeting with Minister Matthews:
- Minister Matthews assigned a specific liaison, Ian Hall, to ensure there is an open line of communication between the minister and concerned student associations throughout Ontario.
- The minister suggested that each student association works closely with college administration to ensure they are aware of contingency plans for each academic school/program once the strike is done.
- Maja and the other presidents raised a number of concerns they have been hearing from students throughout the strike about housing, mental health, tuition, and trade student disruption of learning. The minister will be looking into how the government can best support students with these matters.
- Concerns with the 20 hour/week cap on international students work off campus were raised. The minister will look into this and provide the student presidents with answers.
- Concerns about potential future strikes were raised. The minister asked Maja and the other presidents to submit a recommendation for future involvement of students in strike negotiations which affect them.
Outcome of the meeting with OPSEU and CEC Chairs of Bargaining:
Meetings with OPSEU Chair of Bargaining, JP Hornick and CEC Chair of Bargaining, Sonia Del Missier aimed to encourage the parties to go back to the bargaining table. Maja and the other student presidents voiced student concerns and the impact of the strike on student life and learning. Both parties reiterated their positions but disappointingly did not provide any information as to when negotiations would resume.
IGNITE will continue to work together with other student associations to ensure that the voice of students are heard by both bargaining parties throughout the strike. We will also be approaching Humber and Guelph-Humber administration and Dean of Students, Jen McMillen to ensure student representation in future decision making regarding the continuation of studies once the strike ends.
IGNITE is committed to students and will do everything in our power to keep you updated on the latest developments and negotiation outcomes. For updates, please visit humber.ca/updates and guelphhumber.ca/updates.