What Will it take?

What Will it take?

The health crisis in which we have been immersed since March 12 has made leaders aware of the enormous problems in the health network.  The Barette reforms have left serious scars and this pandemic, unfortunately, is exposing gaping wounds.  It’s as if what unions have been denouncing for years has never been heard…

The education sector is also experiencing the aftermath of austerity measures.  Year after year of cuts in education have amounted to billions. We are often required to work in inadequate conditions, the rate of precariousness is extremely high, support staff salaries are clearly below the Canadian average, the shortage of staff is glaring, and the needs of community are constantly increasing.

So, these days I’m asking myself: “What will it take?”

What will it take for the government to recognize that support staff are an integral part of education and that, most of the time, our work is done in the shadows, but is what we do not essential, like hospital orderlies?

In my opinion, in these extraordinary times, this recognition demands a premium for support staff working on the front-lines. It seems to me that if we can pay medical specialists premiums of up to $2,500 per day, we can certainly offer a monetary sum to those of us running the emergency day care services.

And as long as we are asking questions… would it be so terrible to ask the medical specialists to mop a floor that needed mopping?  Many of our members do this every day in the schools.  And as far as I know, these same medical specialists who pick up their children after school are very happy that their offspring are growing up in a clean environment.

WE are also education!

Éric Pronovost
FPSS-CSQ President

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Support staff, an essential part of the school network