Strike closing 110 Quebec daycares Tuesday; educators say they'd earn more at a restaurant job

Daycare workers rally for higher wages in front of the Ministry of Families offices Friday, September 11, 2020 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Some 8,000 children in Montreal and the surrounding regions won't be going to daycare Tuesday as two more strike days start, sweeping north through the province.

Workers unionized with the CSQ are using the latest of a series of strike days that have shuttered early childhood centres this fall, as the government tries to negotiate a new contract with daycare workers from several unions.

At issue is wages, largely, with workers saying they could make more in unskilled service jobs.

Workers say it takes three years of schooling to become an educator in a daycare, but the starting salary is only $19 an hour.

A union rep told CTV News that educators would make more money working in restaurant, where they'd be paid more and be asked much less in terms of personal involvement and training.

The strikes Tuesday will affect 110 daycares in Montreal, Laval, Lanaudiere, the Eastern Townships and Monteregie.

The following day, the Quebec City, Chaudière-Appalaches and Abitibi regions will be affected.

CSQ demonstrations are planned for Tuesday morning in Montreal, at Parc des Faubourgs at the corner of Ontario St. East and de Lorimier St., and in Sherbrooke in front of 2424 King St. West.

Union members of the CSN-affiliated Fédération de la santé et des services sociaux have announced a second and third day of strike action on Oct. 14 and 15.

Childcare workers from the FTQ-affiliated Syndicat québécois des employées et employés de service are scheduled to hold their first two strike days on Oct, 18 and 19.

--With files from The Canadian Press

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