The group behind that infamous $143 pencil sharpener installation at a Toronto school, says they're ready for a fight.
Jimmy Hazel is head of the Maintenance & Construction Skilled Trades Council. They represent 900 plumbers, electricians, carpenters, groundskeepers, labourers, painters & plumbers.
Speaking after a meeting of the Toronto District School Board Wednesday night, Hazel vowed the group would be speaking up now & they'd be telling the truth.
Board Chair Chris Bolton has blasted the government's extension of the TDSB's contract with the council because a new one hadn't been negotiated by December 31st. Bolton called the move "political" because members of the Skilled Trades Council donate to the Liberals.
But Hazel says the board showed no sign of good-faith bargaining & wouldn't entertain his plan that would've saved $3-million.
Hazel added that the council waon't take having their contracting rights taken away lying down & that they intend to fight. He didn't explain how that fight might unfold, saying only "democracy is a wonderful thing when it comes to getting your message out there".
Hazel adds that it isn't fair to paint his workers as bad guys that are bleeding the TDSB dry. He points their work is assigned & signed off on by board staffers, so it isn't the skilled trades people's fault if they're mismanaged.
In a letter to the TDSB Chair, Hazel lays out some of the TDSB management issues he says are costing the board time & money.
-Trades workers are sent to one job, then re-assigned but told to still log hours for the original job even though it was never done
-Work orders are duplicated, multiple trades people sent to the same job because managers can't determine whose help is needed
-Work orders are vague, resulting in the wrong trades people being sent out
-Trades people being sent to jobs that should've have been done by a school caretaker, including installation of pencil sharpeners & lightbulbs.