QUEEN’S PARK – Niagara NDP MPPs Wayne Gates (Niagara Falls), Jennie Stevens (St. Catharines), and Jeff Burch (Niagara Centre) released the following statement after their ejection from Queen’s Park for refusing to back down from their advocacy on behalf of Ontario students, parents, and education workers:
“Doug Ford and Stephen Lecce can prevent disruption in our schools right now by getting back to the bargaining table and respecting education workers with a fair deal. If Ford and Lecce continue their attack on education workers, their actions will have one result—driving more and more caring adults out of our Niagara classrooms and leaving our kids with less support in school.
Education workers are the people who help kids with disabilities and support our youngest students. They clean classrooms and supervise lunchrooms. Parents are concerned that the lack of respect the Ford government has for education workers will have a lasting impact on the quality of education their children receive.
Education workers have been clear from the beginning that they want a fair deal to stay in the classroom doing the work they love. But they are burnt out, underpaid, and being forced to work two or three jobs to survive.
Doug Ford and Minister Lecce need to immediately rip up their anti-worker legislation and respect education workers with a fair deal. It is the only way we can ensure a sustainable and quality education system in Ontario.
We will not back down. We stand in solidarity with education workers, and the parents and students who they support every single day. Our education system is at stake right now, and we know it’s worth fighting for. We are proud to stand up for what is right.”