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CSQ-affiliated daycare workers ratify strike mandate

Children's backpacks and shoes are seen at an Early Learning daycare, in Langley, B.C., on May 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck Children's backpacks and shoes are seen at an Early Learning daycare, in Langley, B.C., on May 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
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Daycare workers unionized with the CSQ have voted 85 per cent in favour of a "progressive strike" mandate.

The strike would start with the public daycares, or 'centres de la petite enfance' (CPEs), opening half-an-hour later than usual, then one hour, then two hours and so on, to reach half a day.

However, no strike notice has yet been issued, said Valérie Grenon, president of the CSQ-affiliated Fédération des intervenantes en petite enfance (FIPEQ), in an interview on Tuesday.

There are 3,000 members of FIPEQ unions, working in daycare centres in the Montreal, Montérégie, Laval, Lanaudière, Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Chaudière-Appalaches, Quebec and Eastern Townships regions. They are not all the CPEs in these regions, as other union organizations are also represented.

There's no question of an indefinite general strike "for now," Grenon said.

"We just wanted to start gradually, to quietly put pressure on the employers and the government. If we have to go there, we'll go there, but I don't have that mandate in my pocket. And we haven't scheduled any meetings to get it for the time being either," she added.

Quebec is offering child-care workers a 12.7 per cent increase over five years. It submitted its offers to all union organizations in mid-May. Negotiations have only just begun, although the collective agreements expired on March 31, 2023.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on May 21, 2024.

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