BY TYLER ELSON
Janitors, custodians and secretaries recently went on strike at every Catholic high school in Windsor to protest unfair pay and treatment. When the strike began, bathrooms were getting destroyed and torn apart, lunchrooms were littered with thrown food, and classes were being destroyed, according to student Meg Lumsden. As a result of students blocking the doors and denying the teachers entry into the school, students for the whole week had to report to the cafeteria to spend their day learning while everything was being sorted out. The Sheridan Sun visited Windsor on Friday to observe the city’s first walkout.
Five days after the strike started, many Catholic high school students at St. Joseph’s, Brennan and St. Anne’s joined as a group and walked out of school with signs during lunch and protested their school’s actions on the strike. Many students were shouting the hash tag they made up; “#NotBusinessAsUsual” as their school board stated that the strike was just “business as usual”. But to some students that is not true.
“It is not business as usual as this strike is affecting the lives of so many students and teachers and it has to be stopped,” said Lumsden.
The strike meant that events including the semi-formal dance, blood drive, skills dance and the Zakoor Cup hockey game were all cancelled due to lack of supervisors and secretaries who usually helped run the show.
“I think it’s terrible that these events are getting cancelled as we are the top
blood donor school in Ontario and not being able to have it this year is going to suck,” said Lumsden, from St. Joe’s High School.
Jennifer Jask from Brennan High School said “Every year I look forward to the Zakoor Cup and rooting for my school in the hockey game. I have been supporting this game for a while now and it is going to suck to have it cancelled this year.”
Not only do these strikes affect the custodians and secretaries, it also affects the students who now have to gather in the cafeteria, which slows down the students education. “All I hope is these strikes get resolved fast and we can all start attending normal classes soon. This is my last year of high school and I don’t want to spend it not learning anything,” said Christina Allison, a Brennan student.
The walkout helped bring students together and got the word out on how much these strikes are affecting everyone in the community.
“That was the most fun I have had in a while, just seeing everybody stand against these strikes and form together as a whole really makes this community great, “said Troy Murphy, a St Joe’s student.