Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU)

Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU)

August 25, 2009 13:35 ET

OPSEU: Student Worker Protests About Loss of Vacation and Holiday Pay Intensify

CHATHAM, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Aug. 25, 2009) - Student workers of the Ontario government will take their fight for vacation and holiday pay to the public again this weekend at the Rondeau Provincial Park.

Students at Rondeau Provincial Park will leaflet cars going into the park.

DATE: Wednesday, August 26, 2009
TIME: 4:30 p.m. - 6 p.m.
LOCATION: From 401, take exit 101 toward Kent Bridge Road / Ridgetown /
County Road 15 / Dresden.
Follow the signs to Rondeau Provincial Park Main Gate

Students at various provincial parks have leafleted cars entering their parks in recent weekends. Many student groups have also been paying visits to Ontario Liberal Party fundraisers to further draw attention to their cause.

Students are upset at the government's decision to no longer pay its 3,400 student employees vacation and holiday pay. This means that students who work statutory holidays - and they are required to in the provincial parks - will receive no extra pay beyond their hourly wage.

The government's decision to no longer give students 8.16 per cent pay in lieu will cost each student an average of $450 over the course of the summer.

The government isn't making the payments because it doesn't have to follow the same labour standards as all other employers in the province. The government's own law, the Employment Standards Act, exempts the Crown from a number of minimum labour standards, including compensating workers for vacation and statutory holidays.

More than 3,000 students work for the Ontario government each summer at provincial parks, tourist attractions, travel information centres, on ferries and many other programs.

Many of the government services that Ontarians enjoy in the summer rely largely on student labour.

Contact Information

    Sabrina DeGirolamo
    OPSEU Communications
    (416) 443-8888 Ext.7440
    Ashley Jackson
    (519) 678-3654