A guide to the Ontario college strike

October 17, 2017 11:30AM EDT

Sources : ctvnews.ca

Classes are cancelled for approximately half a million students in Ontario, after faculty at colleges across the province went on strike Monday.

Here’s a breakdown of everything you need to know about the impact of the job action.

Who’s on strike?

The labour dispute involves more than 12,000 professors, instructors, counsellors, and librarians at 24 Ontario colleges.

The affected colleges are: Algonquin, Cambrian, Canadore, Centennial, College boreale, Conestoga, Confederation, Durham, Fanshawe, Fleming, George Brown, Georgian, Humber, La cite collegiale, Lambton, Loyalist, Mohawk, Niagara, Northern, Sault, Seneca, Sheridan, St. Clair and St. Lawrence.

Why are they striking?

The Ontario Public Service Employees Union wants more job security and academic freedom for its members. They are calling for more full-time faculty positions to fight a trend towards colleges becoming increasingly reliant on contract and part-time jobs.

But the College Employer Council says meeting the union’s demands would add more than $250 million costs each year.

The council put forward a deal for a 7.75 per cent pay increase over four years and a preference for full-time jobs.

Are classes cancelled?

Most colleges have cancelled or suspended classes until further notice. However, some Continuing Education classes remain in session. More details are available on the college websites.

Are campuses open?

Yes, campuses remain open and some services are still available. Further details are available on the college websites.

Is tuition being refunded?

Not at this time. An online petition demanding that students be refunded tuition fees has amassed more than 60,000 signatures as of Monday.

A college official has said it is still too early to talk about tuition refunds; however, the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development would have to make that decision.

When will the strike end?

It is still unclear when the strike might be resolved. Both sides say there are no talks scheduled.

With files from The Canadian Press



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