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CUPE, government talks ongoing as midnight strike deadline looms

Last Updated Oct 6, 2019 at 4:22 pm PDT

Hamilton-area members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees display signs they may use in a strike should their union and the province not reach a deal by Monday.(FACEBOOK/CUPE HWCDSB)

There’s still a lot of uncertainty for parents Sunday as talks continue between the province and the Canadian Union of Public Employees.

If the union, who represents 55,000 education workers, and the province don’t come to an agreement, a strike will happen at midnight.

As of 5:30 p.m. Sunday, the union issued a brief statement saying “negotiations between the parties are ongoing and the media blackout continues.”

Parents will be left scrambling to make arrangements as over two dozen school boards have said they will shut down classes if the strike action moves forward.

Some parents gathered outside the Sheridan Centre in Toronto where the bargaining talks are happening and were chanting, “Fair deal now,” and “Save our schools.”

A teacher who came out to the rally outside the hotel told CityNews she supports her colleagues in their contract negotiations.

“I wanted to support the staff, my colleagues who support me on a daily basis and who are invaluable members of our school system,” she said.  “I want them to know they are the hardest working, determined, loyal, trustworthy, reliable, passionate people I’ve ever worked with, and that the school system would not work without them.”

Brampton and Vaughan have both announced full-day camps should the strike happen.

Bargaining will continue Sunday with both sides have said they want to see a solution.

Metrolinx has also said there could be some disruptions in the event of school shutdowns.

The transit company says commuters should check ahead for any delays or cancellations especially with GO Transit buses.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford has not said much about the negotiations but said on Sunday that the province is working hard to get a deal.