Teachers have called for arbitration

Why won’t the B.C. Liberal government accept binding arbitration in the education dispute?

Dear Editor:

Why won’t the B.C. Liberal government accept binding arbitration in the education dispute?

The B.C. Teachers’ Federation has offered to hand the decision on wages and benefits over to an arbitrator.

The government continues, although incorrectly, to claim that the teachers’ proposals are “out of line” with other settlements.

The government would be allowed to make their case for lowering these cost items.

The BCTF has also offered to negotiate an interim amount to support class size and composition, an area that the premier has said is the number one priority in education.

This call for arbitration seems very reasonable, yet, the government is stalling, likely, if we are to believe pundits, to refuse the offer.

The real motive behind saying no may have nothing to do with wages, benefits, or even putting a little bit more money into class composition.

It likely has everything to do with the government’s proposal, labelled E.80, which would nullify the two court rulings that teachers have won, finding among other things that the government broke the law, bargained in bad faith, and sought to provoke teachers into strike action in 2011.

If the BCTF were to accept this proposal, the government would not only avoid the ramifications and potential damages from the upcoming appeal, or appeals, class size and composition funding would remain unchanged.

While the government has announced they’ll invest $375 million dollars over the course of the agreement, this is not new money but rather currently budgeted money.

Finally, why would anyone sign away two court victories for nothing?

What is standing in the way of schools opening in a matter of days is the government’s refusal to let the courts decide, something both the premier and the minister of education claim they want to happen.

It’s far past the time that the government demonstrate that they truly care about education, let the court decide the outcome of the issues before it, and enter arbitration on the remaining matters.

Kevin Epp

Penticton

 

Just Posted

Vernon Search & Rescue find lost snowmobiler

Male, 19, went missing in Hunter’s Range area near Enderby

New development in missing plane near Revelstoke

The family of Ashley Bourgeault believe they have found a new clue

Honesty turns to harsher jail sentence for Penticton man

Jakob Holmes kicked a cop in the face while she was on the ground after she attempted to arrest him

Coal dust escaping rail cars spurs petition

Local governments on board with Shuswap resident’s request for better control of escaping particulate

UPDATE: Rockslide keeps Coquihalla northbound lane closed

Highway 5 is closed in one direction.

Video: Skiers speed through 34th annual Reino Keski-Salmi Loppet

Yearly cross-country race provides skiers a chance to test their endurance

Bell Media, NFL take appeal over Super Bowl ad rules to top court

At issue is a ban on substituting American ads with Canadian ones during the game’s broadcast

Crown seeks 4.5 years jail for B.C. woman convicted of counselling tax evasion

Debbie Anderson the latest from group to face jail for teaching debunked ‘natural person’ theory

Brother of B.C. teen killed by stray bullet says the death left a void

Alfred Wong, 15, was gunned down in Vancouver while on his way home from dinner with his family

Movie filmed in Castlegar B.C. opens Friday

Hollow in the Land starring Dianna Agron will be playing in select cinemas.

Semi rollover on Highway 3

Highway 3 is reduced to single-alternating lanes

Update: Fire at Osoyoos business believed to have started on lower level

A fire started on Sunday night at the East Indian Meat Shop and fruit stand

Cougar window shops at Banff grocery store

An RCMP officer spots a cougar outside an Alberta grocery store

Police fear fewer fentanyl imports don’t signal the end of the overdose crisis

RCMP say it’s just as likely that criminal are getting more clever

Most Read