Approximately 100 delegates, alternates and observers representing 24 colleges in the OPSEU Colleges Support Division gathered February 12-13 in Toronto to prepare the final set of demands for bargaining. Their contract expires on August 31 this year, just weeks before the next provincial election. OPSEU President Smokey Thomas and Vice-President-Treasurer, Patty Rout, addressed the delegates and pledged the full support of OPSEU’s leadership as bargaining gets underway in June.
The current bargaining team (elected in October, 2010) surveyed members at all the colleges and submitted the set of demands for final approval from those who attended the weekend meeting. The demands received overwhelming support from delegates.
A new Divisional Executive was elected which includes the following members:
Florry Foster (Chair), Local 137 (St. Clair College); Betty Cree, Local 351 (Fleming College); Mary Lou Martin, Local 557 (George Brown College); Rod Bemister , Local 561 (Seneca College); Rasho Donchev, Local 559 (Centennial College).
Other committees were elected including the Joint Insurance Committee, CAAT Pension Plan Representatives, the Grievance Scheduling Committee and the Joint Classification Committee.
Members at the meeting also strongly endorsed the OPSEU part-time college workers lobbying campaign. CAAT Support leaders were provided with lobbying kits which outline the campaign to force the government to order the Colleges to withdraw their objections to OPSEU’s certification applications and allow the part-timers ballots to be counted.