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Quebec teachers' unions reject government's latest offer

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The Fédération Autonome de l'Enseignement (FAE), a union representing 66,000 elementary and high school teachers in Quebec, has rejected the provincial government's latest offer.

In a statement issued late Wednesday afternoon, the union said the Legault government's offer "contains major setbacks for teachers and their students."

"You may have heard talk this week that negotiations are accelerating for certain groups and that we're on the verge of an agreement for the holidays. This is not, unfortunately, the case for the FAE," said union president Mélanie Hubert in a video message posted to Facebook.

FAE members have been on indefinite strike since Nov. 23, while teachers with the Fédération des syndicats de l'enseignement (FSE-CSQ), affiliated with the Commont Front of public sector unions, have participated in periodic strikes over the past several weeks.

The FSE-CSQ, which represents 95,000 teachers across the province, also said Wednesday that it's disappointed by Quebec's latest offer.

"Despite a big show by the government in the media, their new 'official' proposal represents a step backwards in the talks from this weekend's negotiation sessions," the union wrote on Facebook earlier in the day.

"Disappointed? Yes. Discouraged? No," said President Josée Scalabrini in a video attached to the post. "We're rolling up our sleeves, we're still going, we still have time. What we want is a negotiation done in good faith, and that's what we'll work on until the finish line."

This comes after the Quebec government announced Tuesday it had made a new offer to the unions.

CTV News reached out to the office of Quebec Treasury Board President Sonial Lebel on Wednesday, who declined to comment on the FAE's rejection. 

Also on Wednesday, the Common Front, which represents 420,000 public sector workers including teachers, education support staff and lab technicians, said it would launch an unlimited strike in the new year if a deal isn't reached. 

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