We will get fooled again.

The question is which one plays Townshend (the windmill guitar) and which one plays Daltry (the twirling, lassoing microphone)? And will they both appear on CSI?

“I’ll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution”

(Graphic is courtesy of the creative mind of Anthony Marco)

Toronto Star slanders dead man, TTC employees, and public sector workers in general


Letter submitted to the Star today, 24 July


Re Editorial Cartoon: Toronto Thieves hoist Grand Piano

Shame on the Star for publishing  the Theo Moudakis cartoon aimed at skewering and stereotyping TTC workers. You have outdone yourselves in meanness and confirmed yourselves as being no friend of workers who serve the Toronto public.

Many will recall the incident that “inspired” this cartoon. George Robitaille, a 30 year TTC employee, became the subject of ridicule when a picture of him sleeping in a collector’s booth was uploaded to the Internet in January, 2010. Soon after, he took a medical leave but, twenty months later, Robitaille died from a heart attack. It was revealed that at the time of the sleeping incident, he was taking heart medication which likely induced drowsiness.

The same George Robitaille, in 1995, was working for Wheel-Trans when he was called a hero. A man with a rare disorder was barely conscious when Mr. Robitaille found him on the floor of his home. The man in question said that he would have died if it was not for the efforts of Mr. Robitaille.

With all these facts at their disposal, the Star still decides, using guilt by association, to slander a dead man’s reputation and, at the same time, slander and stereotype all TTC workers. Shame on you.

Tim Heffernan

OSSTF former Prez weighs in on Coran controversy

Paul Elliot

Malcolm Buchanan

MalcolmBuchanan (above right) , former Provincial OSSTF President and General Secretary, has given  permission for the sharing of this e-mail that he sent to Paul Elliot, the new Prez of OSSTF.


Paul Elliot
Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation
60 Mobile Drive
Toronto, Ontario.
M4A 2P3

July 11, 2013

Dear Brother Paul,

Congratulations on your election to the position of President of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation [OSSTF].

As President you will be confronted with many challenges.

Unfortunately, Ken Coran has presented you with a major problem that may define your presidency. If you wish to maintain the support and integrity of the OSSTF membership and the trade union movement you and members of the provincial executive must publicly distance yourselves from Ken’s misguided quest to become a Liberal MPP for the riding of London West.

Ken has every right to seek elected office as a Liberal MPP. However, his decision has created serious doubts in many current and retired OSSTF members minds as to his loyalty to Federation positions, policies and principles, especially the principles of free collective bargaining and democratic rights of members.

If the Federation does not publicly distance itself from Ken and the Liberal Government, the Federation will be viewed as being complicit in his self-serving endeavours. The optics for the Federation are terrible given the Federations and members opposition to Bill 115. Ken has stated that he was asked by Premier Wynne to accept the nomination in London West on behalf of the Ontario Liberal Party and that this is a ‘new’ Liberal Government. Remember, Kathleen Wynne is on record as strongly supporting Bill 115. She is also on record as saying that public sector compensation increases for the foreseeable future will be limited to no more than 1% if that.

What is also problematic is that Ken, while still President, endorsed the candidacy of the NDP candidate for London West by-election. This has further undermined Ken’s credibility.

I have been informed that many OSSTF members in the London area are dismayed by Ken’s decision to seek elected office as a Liberal MPP given the Federations opposition to Bill 115. Many have volunteered to work for the NDP candidate.

OSSTF has a proud history of being a progressive union. It has been supportive of the OFL and CLC campaigns to protect the democratic and collective bargaining rights for all workers. OSSTF has been the champion for building and maintaining a strong public school system.

This proud record is on the line.

It is essential that the Federation publicly states that it does not support Ken Coran’s campaign and will encourage OSSTF members not to support him.

Good luck in your Presidency.


Malcolm Buchanan

OSSTF Life Member

Ken Coran’s 2005 vision

Ken in 2003_1Ken in 2003_3Ken in 2003_2

This the election material Ken Coran presented to delegates at AMPA (OSSTF’s annual assembly) in 2005 when he ran for the provincial presidency of OSSTF. A bit of a difference from the vision he is espousing now as a wannabe Liberal MP. And I wonder how Ken reconciles his new Liberalism with the official Liberalism of the OLP when they put out the following in the Kitchener-Waterloo by-election:

Ont Lib prop 2012but then Ken was supporting the NDP. He even, at the request of Andrea Horwath, called off strike votes 2 days before the K-W election as it was perceived that the publicity surrounding such votes would damage the chances of the NDP candidate.

Visit to London to Visit Coran


10:45 – Tim Heffernan and the author of this post (Janice Patterson) met up with Katia Berdichevsky with her four-month-old son, and Cynthia Grant at 60 Mobile Drive with the intention of meeting with Paul Elliot to talk about our issues with Ken Coran running as a Liberal in the London West by-election.  We were told that Elliot was in a meeting.  We then asked to see Bischoff or Dubue or any member of the Provincial Executive.  They were all in the same meeting.  We said we’d wait.  There was a little flurry of activity as two different employees of Mobile Drive got involved and told us that the meeting was going on and they had no idea when it would be finished, but directed us to the cafeteria where we could wait comfortably.  After about 20 minutes, Lori Foote, OSSTF Associate General Secretary, appeared and told us that there would be no meeting with the Provincial Executive members, as they were all busy.  She also told us that from Tim’s email exchange of the previous day with Paul Elliot, we should have known that there would be no meeting today.

For the rest of the story, read on 

Coran moves on

Coran_McGuinty-birds of feather

Early this morning, July 1st,  I sent this e-mail to Paul Elliot, new OSSTF President, and the other members of the Provincial Executive. Paul’s reply was prompt as was mine to him.


Dear PE members

The news of Ken Coran’s potential career move to become a Liberal MPP has either shocked many ordinary OSSTF members or has confirmed them in their already growing cynicism. Maybe a bit of both.

A group of OSSTF activists in the GTA would like to meet with you to discuss the impact of this decision. Among the things we’d like to talk about are:

  • the possibility of the PE issuing a statement disassociating themselves from Ken’s move; the purpose of such a statement would not be to make a personal condemnation of a former leader but to counter the cynicism and disaffection that is growing in the ranks;
  • Making a clear statement for the upcoming by-elections that any political intervention from OSSTF, whether through offering financial or human resources, shall not be directed to Liberal candidates.

60 Mobile Drive would be a convenient place to meet. Please suggest a time, preferably in the morning. Thanks for your time.

In solidarity



Good morning Tim,

I’m sure this won’t come as a surprise to you, but the PE does not have a protocol  established to meet delegations from districts or bargaining units. I’m sure that you would  understand that with over 60,000 members the bylaws of OSSTF have well established protocols for the calling of Provincial Council meetings where the concerns of locals may be addressed. I suggest that your issues are raised through the regular channels of working with your local bargaining unit.




With all due respect, this is a bullshit response. If you don’t want to meet with a group of disaffected members, fine. But don’t tell me to go through the “regular channels”. We are in summer mode. We are talking D 12. There are no regular channels!
At least give me the courtesy of taking up the political points in my e-mail, particularly the issue of how OSSTF is going to intervene (or not) in the forthcoming by-elections.
In solidarity