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In Canada, entire new school to be built with savings from ditched PPP projects

14 March 2018
The Canadian Union of Public Employees is celebrating a major victory against Public Private Partnerships after the Manitoba government reversed plans to use the controversial PPP model for the construction of new schools in Winnipeg and Brandon.

The Manitoba government initially planned to build four schools under the PPP model, but after a cost-benefit analysis  the savings made by building the schools through solely public provision were found to be enough to build an entire fifth school!

Throughout 2017, CUPE conducted a sustained campaign in Manitoba to “raise red flags” on PPP schools. CUPE 737, representing workers at Brandon School Division, held a public Town Hall meeting, presented to the Brandon School Division Board of Trustees numerous times, and reached out to the community.

“It was incredibly important for the public to understand the implications P3 schools could have, so we made a real effort to inform the public since the government wasn’t going to do so,” said Jamie Rose, President of CUPE 737.

“We are incredibly relieved that the government has chosen not to pursue P3 schools here in Manitoba,” said Terry Egan, President of CUPE Manitoba. “P3 schools across Canada have proven to be more expensive and less accountable to the public, and this is case-in-point.”

PSI Deputy General Secretary, David Boys, lauded the union’s achievement.

"This victory by our Canadian comrades shows that the fight against privatisation can - and must - be won. We will be sharing the story of this campaign with affiliates across the world as an example of the role unions must play in community organising and awareness raising against the insidious creep of private interests over our public services."

More information:

PSI letter of support and solidarity to affiliate CUPE

Also see