At universities and colleges across Ontario, students, campus workers and faculty members have come together to Fight for $15 and Fairness. Will you join? Show your support by signing the letter at FairnessNow.ca.
Many students today are forced to juggle work and school while struggling with low wages and unpredictable schedules. At the same time, the custodial and food service workers on campuses, teaching assistants, and faculty are also faced with increasingly precarious working conditions. This is why in over 14 post-secondary institutions in Ontario we are organizing to win $15 & Fairness for all.
Provincial Campus Network
There is an incredible effort underway on campuses across Ontario to build a strong movement for decent work. Through petitioning, class talks, forums, and coordinated days of action, students have been talking about the links between poverty, student debt, quality education and decent jobs.
In February 2017, multiple campuses participated in a province-wide Valentine’s Day of Action to call attention to the importance of the labour law review. Since then, many campus chapters have organized participatory activities, such as the “Wall of Wages,” to highlight the widening income gap. In September 2017, over 100 students, faculty and campus workers gathered at the first-ever $15 and Fairness Provincial Campus Assembly to share knowledge, discuss strategy and plan next steps.
Bargaining $15 & Fairness
Every campus should be a $15 & Fairness campus! Sadly, many post-secondary institutions in Ontario choose to rely on short-term, precarious jobs instead of investing in good jobs. But collectively, we have the power to reverse this trend.
In early 2017, food service workers at York University represented by UNITE HERE Local 75 went on strike to demand fair wages and working conditions, and an end to workplace harassment, racism and Islamophobia. Student, staff and faculty groups on campus mobilized, in coordination with the province-wide $15 & Fairness network, to let the administration know that food service workers were not alone. Within a week, the workers won a fair deal, including a $15 starting wage, health and dental coverage for full-time and part-time positions, and more! Solidarity works -- from supporting college faculty bargaining for equal pay to food service workers, let’s continue the fight for $15 & Fairness on campuses.
Taking on the Big Business Lobby
FairnessNow.ca is a new initiative launched by the Fight for $15 and Fairness Provincial Campus Network that calls on post-secondary institutions to distance themselves from the Ontario Chamber of Commerce—the foremost business lobby group against a $15 minimum wage and decent work.
As members of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce and its local affiliates, universities and colleges should no longer allow corporate lobbyists to speak in their name against the interests of the vast majority of Ontarians. With decades of peer-reviewed research showing the economic and social benefits of a $15 minimum wage and decent work practices, it is unacceptable for any college or university to be a part of the Chamber’s corporate lobby campaign. Students, staff, faculty and community members can show their support for FairnessNow.ca by signing the letter online.
Join the Fight for $15 and Fairness Provincial Campus Network and be a part of the organizing! Sign up to get updates, find out if there is an active group on your campus, and learn how you can get involved