On Sunday, Jan. 13, the Association des étudiantes sages-femmes du Québec (AÉSFQ), or Quebec Association of Student Midwives, became the FIRST student association in the province to formally vote in favour of an unlimited general strike in the winter of 2019.
The strike motion, which passed by a “strong majority,” will take effect as soon as a minimum of 20,000 students in 3 different regions of the province have passed similar motions, and requires renewal every 14 days at most.
The association has about 80 members and is based at the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières.
From its Facebook page (in French):
“This Sunday, January 13, 2019, student midwives met to vote on the question of launching an unlimited general strike.
“Like many student associations in Quebec, the AÉSFQ issued an ultimatum to the government in November 2018. It announced that an unlimited general strike would be launched in the winter of 2019 unless the government implements the remuneration of all internships.
“Since the winter of 2019 has begun and the remuneration of all internships remains far from achieved, it is time to go on strike. It is with great pleasure that the AÉSFQ rings the opening bell for the march toward an unlimited general strike for the remuneration of all internships.”
The motion’s preamble cites, among other motivations, the importance of valorizing student labour, the vulnerability and precarity of unpaid interns, and the fact that unpaid internships are disproportionately required in female-dominated fields. It also cites the 11 other student associations that have included the possibility of an unlimited general strike in their action plans.
The full text of the motion is available in French on the AÉSFQ Facebook page. Meanwhile, an updated list of student associations on strike will be maintained in the “Who’s On Strike?” section of this website.