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Talks back on, media blackout in place as NSTU, province head back to table

Click to play video: 'Talks back on, media blackout in place as NSTU, province head back to table' Talks back on, media blackout in place as NSTU, province head back to table
The ongoing labour dispute between members of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union (NSTU) and the provincial government is showing no signs of letting up. Global's Natasha Pace reports – Jan 15, 2017

The ongoing labour dispute between members of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union (NSTU) and the provincial government is showing no signs of letting up.

The contractual impasse has now gone on for well over a year and is starting to frustrate some Nova Scotians.

“In my opinion, I think they should have just striked right from the start and really forced the government to make a decision,” parent Lisa Lanigan said.

The NSTU and the province met over four days this week looking to strike a deal but that didn’t happen yet.

READ: Nova Scotia teachers’ 16 contract demands and what the province says they cost

Talks off, then back on again

Saturday night, Education Minister Karen Casey said the union had rejected a proposal from the government and the two sides had reached and impasse.

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“We are disappointed with the outcome,” Casey said in a statement late Saturday evening.

“We tabled an offer that attempted to deal with the classroom conditions raised. We offered solutions on wages and retirement bonus. Unfortunately, this proposal was rejected by the union.”

No details about what offer was tabled by the province has been released at this time, but less than 24 hours later after talks broke down, both sides agreed to head back to the table.

So far, the only comment the NSTU has made is that their negotiating team will meet with government’s team and a conciliation officer Monday.

READ MORE: Talks between Nova Scotia Teachers Union, government will resume

WATCH: Nova Scotia teachers’ salaries rank 6th among provinces: Stats Can

Click to play video: 'Nova Scotia teachers’ salaries rank 6th among provinces: Stats Can' Nova Scotia teachers’ salaries rank 6th among provinces: Stats Can
Nova Scotia teachers’ salaries rank 6th among provinces: Stats Can – Dec 16, 2016

Media blackout in place

While they are in negotiations, the NSTU and the government have both agreed to a media blackout and will not be discussing their negotiations in public.

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Parents and students however, are speaking out, especially when it comes to how work-to-rule is impacting children.

READ MORE: Nova Scotia teachers work-to-rule: What does it mean for you?

“We’re being deprived of a lot of things, especially Grade 12’s not having their graduation and we don’t even get a year book like to see all the memories we made from that year,” said Gr. 11 student Emily Fisher.

“It’s really unfortunate because we have so many things that are literally being ripped away from us. I feel like students are kind of being used as pawns in this situation.”

“The thought of no graduations, there’s no team spirit in the schools. I just think it’s awful and I think the students are suffering and it makes me sick,” Lanigan added.

WATCH: NS students produce video to shed light on work-to-rule impact

Click to play video: 'STUDENTS WORK TO RULE' STUDENTS WORK TO RULE
STUDENTS WORK TO RULE – Jan 11, 2017

Public support swaying for some

The longer the labour dispute continues, the more people say their support for one side is beginning to sway.

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“I feel like from the get-go students were really being supportive of teachers and now I feel like with nothing being resolved, students are kind of backing away from that a little bit because of how many things we’re being deprived of,” said Fisher.

READ: Minister questions NS teachers’ training trips during work-to-rule

“My support has always been for the teachers,” Bernice Deveaux said.

“I feel that they give 100% each and every day. They want to help out the children, they have the children’s best interest at heart.”

“It started more with the teachers but as it drags on, it’s starting to go the other way because it’s hard on the kids and it’s all about the kids and it’s affecting them,” said Paul Gillespie.

 

 

 

 

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