Letter to the Editor: Why we strike

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca for as little as $5 per month!

Rally4Faculty at Queen's Park on Nov. 2. Photo: @OPSEU/Twitter

Letter to the Editor (Submitted to the Toronto Star)
Re: College Professors on Strike

I hate being on strike. Being on strike is never enjoyable, and especially not when you love your job.

I am a full-time professor and I have been on strike for the past three weeks. I voted for the strike not because I have anything to gain from it personally. Quite the contrary, I assumed from the outset that I would lose weeks of salary. I am on strike not for myself but on behalf of a principle.

This strike presents all of us in Ontario with a fundamental question: what kind of society do we want to live in? Do we want a society of precarious part-time jobs? Only 20 per cent of college professors in Ontario are full-time. Our union has asked for that number to be increased to 50 per cent. The College Employer Council (CEC) claims that this important change is unrealistic due to cost. Yet the colleges have posted a $188 million surplus over the past year alone.

Beyond the obvious financial ability of our colleges to treat their employees fairly, this is a debate about our vision of the future. I am striking for a better society, a society which enables full-time employment.

Thomas Ponniah
Professor, School of Liberal Arts and Sciences 
George Brown College
Toronto, Ont.

Photo: @OPSEU/Twitter

Like this article? Please chip in to keep stories like these coming.

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.