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CUPE picketing in Sturgeon Falls, North Bay and Powassan on Friday

The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), which represents 55,000 education workers in Ontario, is planning pickets in three locations around the area on Friday, Nov. 4. 

They include Timiskaming-Cochrane MPP John Vanthof’s office on King Street in Sturgeon Falls, Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli’s office on Main Street in North Bay, and in downtown Powassan, on the 500 block of Main Street.

The Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) says its education workers will be walking out and joining CUPE members on the picket lines across the province.  

Both the Nipissing-Parry Sound Catholic and French Catholic boards have said their schools will be open on Friday.  

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The Near North Board says some schools will be closed while, at last check, some will be open.

The French public board says their schools will be closed.  

All four say updates will be provided online and through regular communication channels from either schools or the board. 

Locally, CUPE represents custodial and maintenance staff, secretaries, IT and library technicians, and others.  

In terms of a new contract, the provincial government has rejected CUPE’s counter-offer, adding it will entertain no further proposals until the union calls off its threatened walkout.

The union responded by saying the strike will begin on Friday and continue indefinitely.

On Thursday, the provincial government expects to pass its back-to-work legislation, which imposes their latest offer on the union’s members, and outlaws their right to strike. 

**With files from Norman Jack

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