Top five stories in Ottawa this week

Some Ottawa schools are closing while education workers stage a political protest, the Ottawa Senators are up for sale and someone in Eastern Ontario is $60 million richer.

CTVNewsOttawa.ca takes a look at the top five stories on our website this week.

Education workers and parents on picket lines as CUPE ‘political protest’ closes some Ottawa schools

Eight school boards in Ottawa and eastern Ontario closed schools to in-person learning on Friday, as education workers staged a ‘political protest’ against the government’s decision to Ontario to impose a contract.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees said its 55,000 members would go on strike Friday morning if a new deal was not reached with the province. In response, Ontario passed a law to impose a four-year contract on education workers and made any professional action illegal.

On Friday, education workers and their supporters took to the picket lines in labor action. CUPE said it will continue next week unless the Ontario government returns to the bargaining table and repeals back-to-work legislation.

“We love our work, we love our children, we just wanted to be recognized for what we do,” said Monique Natale, administrative secretary of the Conseil des écoles publiques francophones d’Ottawa. “Unfortunately, unless you work in a school, you don’t really see what we do.”

The Ottawa Catholic School Board and the Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario have closed schools to in-person learning and classes have been moved online due to the strike.

“There’s an old saying in the labor movement about one more day, and I can tell you that our members’ commitments are resolved and we don’t plan on backing down,” said CUPE national president, Mike Hancock, at Newstalk 580 CFRA.

“It’s huge; it’s an attack on my members and an attack on the labor movement.”

Union action by workers is expected to continue next week.

The Lafferty family joined education workers and supporters on the picket line on the first day of CUPE’s political protest in Ottawa and across Ontario. (Dave Charbonneau/CTV News Ottawa)

The “For Sale” sign hangs in the Canadian Tire Center for the Ottawa Senators.

The NHL club confirmed this week that the franchise is for sale, but a condition of any sale is that the club remain in Ottawa.

Galatioto Sports Partners, a New York-based bank that provides advisory services to the sports industry, has been retained as financial adviser.

“It was a necessary and prudent step to connect with these deeply interested parties who can show us what their vision is for the future of the team,” said Sheldon Plener, president and governor of the Ottawa Senators, in a press release.

“A condition of any sale will be that the team stays in Ottawa.”

Melnyk’s daughters, Anna and Olivia, took over the Senators after their father passed away in March due to illness. The franchise is run by a three-person board of directors.

Sports business publication Sportico reported Tuesday that the Senators have retained Galatioto to explore a sale of the team. Sportico valued the Senators at US$655 million, a jump of 21% over the past year, the most in the NHL.

People magazine reported Wednesday that Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds is “very interested” in buying the franchise, citing a source close to the Deadpool star.

Eugene Melnyk’s daughters – Anna and Olivia – joined the Senators for the official team photo Thursday at the Canadian Tire Centre. (Courtesy Twitter/Senators)

Ottawa police announced this week that the human remains found in an apartment building in Vanier under construction are those of a missing Inuit woman, last seen in Ottawa’s east end over of five years.

Workers at a three-story apartment building on Deschamps Avenue discovered human remains in the building on September 28.

On Sunday, the Ottawa Police Service Homicide Unit identified the remains as those of Mary Papatsie.

Papatsie was 39 when she was reported missing in 2017. Police say Papatsie was last seen in the Vanier area on April 27, 2017.

Ottawa police say Mary Papatsie was last seen in April 2017. (Ottawa Police Service/news release)

According to the Ontario Provincial Police, five children were sleeping in the backseat without seat belts in a vehicle stopped at high speed on Highway 401 in eastern Ontario.

On Wednesday, officers from Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry stopped a vehicle traveling 143 km/h, police said on Twitter.

“Officers discovered the rear seats folded down with children between the ages of 3 and 12 lying down sleeping without a seat belt,” the OPP said.

The driver faces speeding charges and five seat-belt charges.

Someone east of Ottawa is $60 million richer after Tuesday’s Lotto Max jackpot.

The winning ticket was sold somewhere in the United Counties of Prescott and Russell, according to the OLG. If you purchased a ticket for Tuesday’s draw, OLG advises you to check your ticket.

The United Counties of Prescott and Russell stretch from the eastern edge of Ottawa to the Ontario-Quebec border. They include eight municipalities: Alfred and Plantagenet, Casselman, Champlain, Clarence-Rockland, Hawkesbury, East Hawkesbury, The Nation and Russell.

The $60 million jackpot is the biggest lottery win in Prescott and Russell since 2011, when Hawkesbury, Ont. couple JoAnn and Gaetan Champagne won $50 million.

Ottawa police say Mary Papatsie was last seen in April 2017. (Ottawa Police Service/news release)

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