The pro-labour Ontario Liberals are about to make enemies of their bedfellows. Kathleen Wynne has opted to introduce back to work legislation in the five week old strike that has more than 500,000 Ontario college students on the verge of losing the semester. Ironic considering the deadline for students to ante up for next semester is this week.
As is usual with governments and in particular the marketing machine that is the #OntLiberals we can expect to hear the rhetoric. We tried blah, blah, collective bargaining, blah, blah, students, semester, blah, blah, blah…
Wynne herself has stated “We have said repeatedly that students have been in the middle of this strike for too long and it is not fair. We need to get them back to the classroom.”
If that were true legislation would have been introduced weeks ago. But the Liberal’s need OPSEU support in upcoming elections. They can not afford to be seen as anti-labour. That demographic is too important to any re-election effort. Just ask the NDP who will try and hold up the legislation in some desperate attempt to win back support that they lost back when turncoat Bob bled orange.
So why the sudden move to legislate? Earlier this week a group of 14 students filed a class action lawsuit against the College’s they attend asking for full refunds for any students who wish to withdraw or partial refunds for any students who wanted to finish the semester once the strike ends.
If the institutions were to lose in court it could end up costing billions of dollars. A price tag that would end up falling right into the government’s lap. If there is one thing the financially inept Liberals can not afford, it’s to lose another billion.
Come next election, the voting public may turn out en masse to oust Wynne and her cronies in the wake of fallout from another billion dollar scandal. It might well be the only thing more damning to Ontario’s ruling party than losing the support of labour.
Copyright 2017 Greg Glazebrook, All Rights Reserved.