Québec government and unions stand firm as childcare strikes drag on

The unions want to extend the salary increase for educators to all nursery staff, but Quebec says it cannot afford it.

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The provincial government and unions representing daycare workers defended their positions as strikes continued on Monday and are expected to keep Quebec’s daycare centers closed for the next three to four days.

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Speaking to reporters in Montreal on Monday, spokespersons for the CSN , CSQ and FTQ confirmed that they will seek unlimited strike mandates from their memberships after the strike days planned for this week.

The main stumbling block in the increasingly difficult negotiation is whether or not to expand the pay increase that Quebec offered educators to include all daycare employees, such as cooks, administrators and handymen.

“It is clear that no agreement will be possible unless the Treasury Board changes its position,” said Denis Bolduc of FTQ. “I heard again this morning that Tim Hortons is offering his employees up to $ 20 an hour. There are a lot of people in (daycare) who don’t earn even that. “

The Legault government justified offering higher salaries to educators because the current labor shortage has increased the demand for their services.

Speaking to 98.5 FM Monday morning, Treasury Board President Sonia LeBel said the government does not have the financial means to be so generous with salary offers to other daycare employees.


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