Monday, March 5, 2012
B.C. teachers strike. Ontario wants freeze on teacher wages
In a number of provinces education spending is being curbed and new austerity measures are being introduced. Ironically two provinces governed by Liberal parties are facing the biggest showdown with the teachers. Alberta on the other hand governed by Conservatives has been much more generous with education spending. Conservatives have a reputation for cuts and Liberals for spending but economic conditions rather than ideology seem to play a larger role in what policies are followed.
British Columbia teachers have walked off the job today. The Liberal government is calling for a wage freeze. The B.C. walkout follows after months of conflict between the Teachers' Federation and the government. The government is adamant that any contract must meet a "net-zero mandate". The teachers say that the province is causing more damage to an already underfunded system.
In Ontario the Liberal premier Dalton McGuinty also has demanded a salary freeze until 2014 and also benefits such as banking sick days. The Ontario teacher unions calls the government proposal offensive and as offering a false choice.
Paul Taillefer president of CTF said:"I don't think it's fair. It's a rather simplistic look at things," People seem to have forgotten the benefits of progressive taxation." The problem is that politicians have not forgotten that raising taxes is not a vote getter! For much more see this article.