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If you require more information, please contact Gwen Merritt at


Date: June 22 (9 - 4.30) & 23 (9 - 1).


Location: Hilton Meadowvale, 6750, Mississauga Road, Mississauga, ON. L5N 2L


Classes Available

(For more detailed information on the classes, scroll to the end of this email).


Challenging Discrimination in Everyday Union Work

Duty to Accommodate 1: A Tool for Inclusive Workplace

Health & Safety 2

Stewards 1

Stewards 2

Union Skills for Workplace Investigation

Hotel Registration (to receive the reduced rate): May 17th, 2024.

*Members are responsible to booking/cancelling their own accomodation.To book, click here:


Members who live beyond 60 km are entitled to room accommodation for Friday and Saturday night(s).

Members who live within 60 km are entitled to room accommodation for Saturday night only.

ExpensesHotel costs, meals, and milage are reimbursable following the standard OPSEU rates.


If you wish to claim your expenses prior to the event, please complete the advance form.

Class Registration: May 24, 2024.

To register for a class, fill out the form.


*Once you have registered, consider yourself in the class. You will not receive a confirmation!

Other useful information


Child CareTo request child care at the education, please complete this form and return to:


Human Rights Accomodation Request

If you have a human rights request, please complete this form.

Class Descriptions

Challenging Discrimination in Everyday Union WorkThis course looks at everyday situations in our workplaces and union where inequality and racism are at work, and where people can take effective action. It uses case scenarios and analysis to examine different forms of discrimination – race, gender, age and disability – and its divisive effects. And it draws from videos and role play to get people to practice responding practically tosituations.


The course helps us to see equity and human rights as basic union work for all. And it strengthens our skills as effective allies and advocates to build more inclusive workplaces and locals.

Duty to Accommodate 1: A Tool for Inclusive Workplace

Provincial legislation and existing case law require employers and unions to provide accommodation short of undue hardship.


This interactive course examines the roles and responsibilities of the employer, the union and the member in accommodating members with disabilities and all other protected groups under the Ontario Human Rights Code. It builds activists’ skills to support members requiring an accommodation, and to deal with employer resistance to accommodation in the workplace.


Health & Safety 2

This course is designed for Health and Safety committee members and union activists with a strong interest in Health and Safety. Participants learn how to be more effective members of their JHSC’s as they work in small groups learning how to better identify, categorize, and controlhazards.Using case studies and examples from their own workplaces, participants learn how to improve workplace inspections, and how to begin accident and illness investigations.


The course offers the opportunity to prioritize and strategize around health and safety problems and to address problems specific to participants’ own workplaces.


The course builds on the material in OPSEU’s Level 1 course and assumes that participants have a basic knowledge of theOccupational Health and Safety Act.


Stewards 1

This updated version (March 2015) of Stewards 1 includes a more detailed description and history of OPSEU / SEFPO’s equity-seeking groups. The course continues to support stewards through a range of tools and practical activities. The key aims are to strengthen steward skills to orient a newvemployee to the union, have effective one-on-one conversations with a cross-section of members, develop a communications strategy to enlist diverse member involvement, and develop approaches to everyday workplace problems.Throughout the course, participants are supported as they develop a profile of their members, clarify the tasks of the steward, find the resources and information in OPSEU / SEFPO, and understand the grievance process and their role in it.


Stewards 1 is a prerequisite to Stewards 2 and must be completed before taking Stewards 2.

Participants should bring their collective agreements.


Stewards 2

This revised follow-up to Stewards 1 focuses on investigating and writing a grievance, facing management, and involving members in worksite action. Participants will use their own collective agreements to identify grievances. They will become immersed in an evolving case study in order to interview a grievor, write up a grievance, face the employer at a step 1 and make a presentation on safety issues to the union side of the Joint Health and Safety Committee. They will examine the elements of effective mobilization and develop a campaign strategy.


Prerequisite: Stewards 1


Union Skills for Workplace Investigation

Have you ever been called, at the last minute, to the employer’s office to “represent” a memberwho is being accused of serious wrong-doings? Have you wondered what to do and how best to represent this person, particularly if you suspect that they may have broken a rule or two?This hands-on course takes you step by step, through a workplace investigations process. It starts with the first contact with the member through to the response to the investigation findings, with lots of practice in between. Through case studies and a variety of active exercises, you’ll practise interviewing the member, anticipating the investigator’s questions, preparing themember for meeting the investigator, taking good notes at the meeting, and working with the member to respond to the findings. The Resource Toolkit has additional information about investigations in different sectors, use of surveillance and other issues.




March 26, 2024
1 - 2 pm

Learn all about how SWF are prepared and what should be included.  Bring a copy of one of your own SWF to follow along and ask specific questions

Salary Step



April 9, 2024
noon - 1 pm

Have you ever wondered if you are being paid fairly?

Learn how step calculations are performed.  Bring your own step calculations to follow along and ask specific questions

What's on

your mind?

Let us know other
topics that need to
be discussed

Reach out to share what issues are important to you and your colleagues

In The News


Local 237 & 238 On City News - Kitchener Discussing President's Derogatory Public Remarks

Listen from 35 minutes.

Local 237 & 238 Response to President's Derogatory Public Remarks

Dear Chair Boutzis and Board of Governors members,


We are writing on behalf of OPSEU Locals 238 & 237 to express our condemnation of the president’s recent public derogatory comments about sex workers and international students. An apology and investigation are only the first steps to re-establishing Conestoga’s values of inclusivity and respect; we are also calling for John Tibbits to consider retirement.


The president’s recent public remarks contravened the College’s own employee code of conduct, causing harm to employees, their families, and our institution’s reputation. His use of language derogatory to sex workers was deeply sexist, reinforcing the stigmatization of both women and sex workers. Equally disturbing was his claim that international students are "choosing to live the way they do to avoid paying more than $400" which contains an insidious form of racism and anti-immigrant sentiment that implies international students have problematic motivations and needs in comparison to domestic students. Further, these ignorant, hurtful, and untrue remarks undermine our work to support students who are at the financial breaking point, precariously housed, frustrated, and under massive pressure.


Retiring will signal that he is taking responsibility for his actions, and it will give him space to reflect on the harm these comments have wrought. In retirement, he will have the time he needs to educate himself on the damaging effect of sexist language and narratives that stigmatize sex workers and international students. In our joint responsibility to champion equity, diversity, and inclusion, we ask the president to take responsibility for his actions and make space for more diversity in Conestoga’s leadership.





Vikki-Lee Poirier        Leopold Koff

President Local 238     President Local 237 

OPSEU/SEFPO's statement in the issue is forthcoming, as an increasing number of members work in different capacities in Colleges and Universities, provincewide.  


But when asked for our input, the DivEx communicated the following overarching points:

  • We stand together with international and domestic students, and believe that they deserve quality education and the supports that they need to benefit from that education, including housing

  • Like OCUFA, we believe that the primary issue is not international students, but provincial underfunding.  Ontario famously has the lowest per-capita postsecondary student funding in Canada.  If Colleges and Universities were funded appropriately, Colleges would base international student targets on educational priorities, not fiscal ones.

We note that some College Presidents and senior administrators have wasted no time in turning to the language of scarcity and austerity, predicting program closures and layoffs if Ottawa carries through with its plans.  We believe that this is irresponsible, and not supported by their record-setting profits in recent years.


We urge you to find ways to inoculate your membership against these scare tactics, which are designed to whip up public support for an exploitative status quo, and to prepare our members for hardship.  To that end, we are sharing with you the publicly-available data (compiled by Ravi Ramkissoonsingh), showing that the 24 Colleges reported surpluses of almost $4 billion in the last 19 years, of which $2.66 billion was earned in the last eight years.


The second thing to consider is the explosive growth in International students recently.  This year, Ontario reports approximately 500,000 international students in its postsecondary institutions.  Preliminary research suggests that a reduction of 50% in the number of new permits provided over the next two years would merely have the effect of returning the number of international students in Ontario Colleges to roughly what we saw in 2018 or 2020.  You can look at your own college's 2018 surpluses, to determine whether it is reasonable or appropriate for your College President to sound the alarm about your College's financial health if International students returned to those numbers.


Lastly, you may yourself be asked to join in the call to oppose the federal government's new policy.  We would instead encourage you to consider asking your College's managers to join in the call for increased provincial funding, so that our College's do not need to rely on international students and privatization.


As Locals begin demand-setting meetings, we're happy to provide whatever information and support that we can to help members feel confident in the importance of their own priorities at their workplace.


Yours in Solidarity,

Your CAAT-A Divisional Executive

Become a Member in Good Standing

Did you know, you have to be a member in good standing to receive support for OPSEU Local 237. This includes support in your daily interactions with the college, filing greviences, attending General Member Meetings, and receiving strike fund support.

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