I guess this is the union’s attempt to woo us…?

York Undergrads… Frustrated by the Strike?


So Are We!

Why are we frustrated?
We’ve been at the bargaining table with York University’s administration since July, trying to get a fair contract for over 3000 contract faculty, teaching and graduate assistants. The administration has refused to present us with a reasonable contract offer and has forced us to go on strike. This was our last resort.

We are going without pay from York for as long as we are on strike, and most of our members are students who paid fees this term so this is neither fun nor economically stable for us.

The administration is trying to turn our students (and the public) against us by misrepresenting our needs and demands in the media.

Why are we on strike?
Our contract was up for renewal and we asked for job security for contract faculty, some of whom have been teaching at York for many years; fair wages for all; and funds to catch up with the growth in our membership since our last contract.

Right now we do more than half the teaching on campus but less than 10% of York’s budget goes to our contract. We want more money going into teaching and learning in the classroom. That’s what you pay for.

We want to negotiate a fair settlement but the University is effectively refusing to bargain.

CUPE 3903 members, as students and teachers, have no interest in disrupting classes. Education is what we do every day – it is our main concern and our job. For many us, our studies have also been interrupted.


Striking is our only option

Going on strike is our legal right and it’s the only option we have to pressure the administration to deal fairly with our membership.

You can help end the strike…

Send a direct message to York U President Mamdouh Shoukri by going to: http://cupe.ca/action/3903-york

Come out and march with us on the picket lines!
We’ll be at York’s Keele and Glendon campuses from 7am-7pm, Monday to Friday

Tell York what you think:

• Support your TAs, contract faculty and GAs in CUPE 3903.
• Value our teaching, support and research.
• Classroom teaching should be THE main priority in York’s budget.
• Negotiate at the bargaining table ASAP – NOT in the media.
• Respect CUPE 3903’s legal right to collective bargaining instead of using forced arbitration to score cheap PR points.

Write or call these people:
•    Mamdouh Shoukri, President mshoukri@yorku.ca  Tel: 416-736-5200   Fax: 416-736-5641
•    Peter Sadlier-Brown, Special Advisor to the President, petersb@yorku.ca
•    Ken Fasciano, Manager, Communications, fasciano@yorku.ca

Thanks for your support!



Filed under Uncategorized

77 responses to “I guess this is the union’s attempt to woo us…?

  1. nikgs

    CUPE is selfish, York is selfish, I’m selfish too. I don’t care about you at all, get back to work.

  2. We are going without pay from York for as long as we are on strike, and most of our members are students who paid fees this term so this is neither fun nor economically stable for us.

    — maybe doing your job well in the first place would merit increases in pay and benefits.

    — i swear, TAs shouldn’t be paid in the first place!

  3. Ams

    love the first comment lol!

    basically, CUPE needs to get a better proposal for york.

  4. x

    Kind of off topic BUT, seeing as how the internet is my only source of info on the strike (haven’t really seen/heard much about it from other news sources) will they e-mail us about when the strike is over and classes will resume? I’m afraid it will without me evening knowing it!

  5. nikgs

    The thing that bugs me about the TA’s getting more money/paying less tuition, is that I can’t see the money coming from anywhere besides increased undergrad tuition….

    I know you TAs have it rough, every student could use more cash. I think CUPE is taking advantage of the situation. But what can you do.

  6. Nathan


    They probably won’t do a mass 50,000 person email. My suggestion: check up on the CUPE website and/or the yorku.ca website for updates.


    The money will not come from undergrad tuition, since it’ll be capped by the gov’t. It’ll either come from the government (via tax money), from increased service charges (parking/residence are the big ones), or just a simple cut to another department.

    It’s kind of CUPE’s job to take advantage of the situation – they are a union after all, and as such, should try to win as much as humanly possible for their constituents. I just wish they wouldn’t put such a “woe is us” spin on everything though. It’s getting irksome.

  7. Laura

    nikgs – love the comment.

    I agree, I’ve reached the point where I’ve gotten exhausted by all of this. I just want to go back to school, for god’s sake, I don’t care who “wins.”

  8. Disillusioned

    I honestly see CUPE’s side of it, some professors have been teaching for 20 years and have to renew their contract each year instead of just being put on the faculty. I can’t imagine going through my career with that level of job security. And I think the admin is presenting a skewed perspective on their demands…..but, ultimately I am with you, nikgs…..I am selfish and just want to go back to school and be guaranteed my education and vacation time!

    I just hope both sides come up with something new to bring to the table and that a decision is made soon.

  9. Taka

    “”””””Right now we do more than half the teaching on campus but less than 10% of York’s budget goes to our contract. “”””””

    This is the absolute stupidest thing I have ever read in my life. They are insulting our intelligence with this absolutely ridiculous sentence.

    The first part of that sentence has NOTHING to do with the second half.

    They do half the teaching. That’s nice. Teaching isn’t the only thing a university budget covers. They also have to cover administration, facilities, maintenance, ETC, ETC. Why the heck are they comparing the BUDGET OF RUNNING THE ENTIRE UNIVERSITY with the amount of teaching they do? They should compare the percent of the budget towards teacher’s salaries compared to regular faculty.

    Hey everyone! At the restaurant I work at, I do 100% of the phone answering, yet I don’t get 100% of the budget!! How unfair is that!!!

  10. Ams

    watch this arnd the 1:50 mark thats the MAC cupe rep discussing 2010

  11. ff

    what are we supposed to be noticing?

  12. Ams

    that they all plan to strike in 2010..and want to line of contracts that end in 2010.

    personally, if this means that another strike will take place in two years, meeting their demands is ridiculous.

    we need a long term solution.

  13. nikgs

    Correct tuition increases are gov controlled, but I don’t really think the gov is going to start giving out more cash because York needs to pay TAs better. Also, service fees hurt undergrads (as well as TAs). Not sure what other departments could be cut, can’t comment on that other than to say it doesnt sound that great to me. So yeah, something would have to change.

    I realize it is CUPEs job as a union to do whatever they can. I meant to imply that on average I would imagine students are quite disgruntled compared to most unionized groups, and that CUPE alone can’t change that, yet they seem to pretend that they can. I do believe that some of the people involved in CUPE have other personal career based agendas in all this, but I’ll admit that as my own bias.

  14. ff

    a long term solution would have been to give them a 2 year contract 2 weeks ago and wait until 2010 to figure out how education is going to be in Ontario in the future.

  15. Ams

    is that fair for 1st-2nd year undergards who are in a strike right now and then have to go through another one at graduation time?

  16. Andrew

    The 2010 solution will most likely involve gold-plated contracts for the TAs, as they will be the only ones at the table. And that assumes they can even get the government to come to the table without another bruising strike.

    Anyone concerned with the long-term health of Ontario’s universities should be alarmed by the prospect of sector-wide contracts.

  17. yorkstrike2008


    Nope it is not at all. I am in 2nd year and I am quite worried about that prospect as well.

    Does anyone know if there has been any previous collective bargaining in the past with CUPE-Univerity locals in Ontario?

  18. ff

    nikgs, the 2010 strike that is being planned is so that more locals can co-ordinate their strikes, and negotiate directly with the provincial government, as they are basically saying “we realize the employer needs more money to meet our demands” and going to the source.
    The reason this irks a lot of people is because neo-liberal economics are hegemonic these days. Mike Harris only took power 14 years ago, people – things weren’t always this way – and when they weren’t, there may have been an oil crisis, and stagflation, but there wasn’t the same financial panic or massive bailouts as you see today in what is purportedly a ‘free market’

  19. 1 out of 50,000

    if they are looking to line up with other CUPEs for 2010, how much in the interest of their membership are they acting? If you are an undergrad TA, will you still be around and employed in 2010? or have moved on to better things?

    They have contract faculty going into their 20th year at York? Um, what kind of prof has a 20 year career and no academic institution willing to hire them or tenure tracked? Not a good sign at all.

    No sympathies for CUPE….or the administration really since they canceled classes.

  20. ff

    are they proposing sector-wide contracts? That would be a really bad idea, since it would severely weaken bargaining power in the future.

    As for AMS’ comment re: 1st and 2nd year students: I agree it will be bad; that is why the DROP FEES campaign is so important. Get behind it, and get it going, as the more students speak together, the more things like the abolition of tuition fees become a real possibility. The iron will be hot in 2010, and it will be a perfect time for students to speak as one on how we view education. If it is only graduate students that value education – then it seems unfortunate, but likely that they will benefit while undergraduates may again be forced to weather the storm.
    Anyway, if someone were truly concerned about a work stoppage in 2010, they have 2 years to figure out one of the many other schools in Canada that will not be participating.

  21. nikgs

    Well then I guess it boils down to me not having faith in CUPE to change the system.

    I agree that there would be a better way to run the unis, but I’ll let my vote speak to that instead of a union that I’m not a memeber of and therefore has no interest in me.

  22. Andrew

    ff, as a faculty member, coordinated bargaining irks me because it is a direct attack on the autonomy of universities from government. CUPE (the parent of CUPE 3903) has spoken of ways for the government to find cost savings across the entire Ontario university sector, which is frankly shocking — neither they nor the government have any place dictating the day-to-day operations of universities in this province.

  23. Andrew

    … neither they nor the government have any place dictating the day-to-day operations of universities in this province … because both will be doing so for self-serving reasons.

  24. ff

    I think the union does have an interest in students – they want to be teachers for crying out loud!
    I love learning, and I love people who love learning – that is why I’m going to graduate school; to be around people who share my passion, and to assist those who aren’t as far along in the process.

    2000/01 is the perfect example of how strong the 3903 is. A lot of people were saying the same stuff they are now. It ended up going 11 weeks before the administration decided that the union was serious. Why won’t they take them seriously now? This is our time and money going down the drain! I hate this macho-gamesmanship, but if it means that I will better be able to put food in my belly next year, then I will be happy and grateful for what everyone is doing now.
    As I was saying previously, undergraduate have a voice too. We actually have a HUGE voice, and we do have a union. Right now they are passively supporting the union, but politics, the kind of politics that bring about real change isn’t about passively casting a vote once in a while – it is about exactly what CUPE is doing right now. It might not keep things running smoothly, but I don’t happen to view spending 6-8 years digging myself out of debt for an education as the smooth transition into adulthood/career as exactly smooth either.

  25. ff

    I share your sense of unease over the autonomy of the university – but what is happening now? They are tying funding to the ‘centres of excellence” model, and based on research results. The whole idea of York “Tentanda Via” (The Way Must Be Tried) seems to suggest that it isn’t the ends, but the route that matters. (sorry if i’m being cliched!)
    It appears to me as though the province’s funding strategy is akin to “structural adjustment policies” you see in the so-called developing world. What choice is there but to stop this neo-liberal charade – who is to put an end to it if not the administration?
    I think that is why it has come to this – not by anyone’s choice, but out of sheer necessity.

  26. Ams

    I do think Undergrads really need to come out and say, “Hey this is not OK, you can’t use us as a pawn. Do whatever you have to do and make this come to an end”.

  27. Nathan

    “2000/01 is the perfect example of how strong the 3903 is. A lot of people were saying the same stuff they are now. It ended up going 11 weeks before the administration decided that the union was serious. Why won’t they take them seriously now? This is our time and money going down the drain!”

    This is the problem right now. The University IS taking the Union seriously (despite what the CUPE website says), but they desperately do not want to give the Union what they want, because it sets a very bad precedent when all the other unions are at the table in 2011 – not to mention the spectre of 2010, so it’s trying everything to give the Union less than what it wants. The Union is betting that if it drags it out 11 weeks or longer, they will get what they want – they have precedent buoying their confidence.

    I don’t see this ending until one side is brought to its knees financially (either the University is faced with 50,000 refunds, or CUPE National tells the local “enough of this”), or until the government intervenes.

  28. ff

    Re: self-serving reasons

    I think the issues need to be framed in the biggest terms possible. What is at stake is higher education. It is time to decide what value we place on education.
    I don’t happen to think a return to elitist smaller institutions is the way to go, and I also think that students are always being crippled by debt.

    Although the union has to speak for its own concerns, there is no reason that undergraduates cannot also target 2010 as a time to demand education reform. Or full-time faculty, administration and so on.

    As someone that is pursuing a career in academia, I admit, I will work and fight for what is in my self interest, union’s interest and class’s interest, but another truth is that I would do it for free if I knew my kids would be ensured any education they could want.

    Maybe education isn’t the value I want it to be for most people. Time and action will show – but until then, I see nothing wrong in holding out, or even outright recreating the value of education.

  29. dharm

    hey AMS we were there, but sadly you cant make it, we had student rally for not supporting the trike.
    Read Toronto star tomorrow

  30. ff

    ams, undergrads need to realize that this is much broader than simply an issue between the union and the administration. The reason it is getting drawn out has a lot to do with what will/might happen in 2010.
    I agree that undergraduates would do well to recognize their position as ‘pawns’ – but the best response is not to attack the admin/union – but to take aim at the source of the problem itself: the woeful underfunding of higher education at ALL levels and the ridiculous debts we are all carrying just so we can become ‘productive’ members of society.

    Nathan, I’m in agreement with you, but I think that while CUPE stands to win this strike, the administration is banking that the cost (time/image/money) will severely dint 3903’s ability to do the same in 2 years.

  31. nikgs

    Well the strike sure isn’t going to help my ridiculous debt, but I’m glad you’re happy.

  32. ff

    Lemons –> Lemonade

  33. York Student

    ^^^ hahaha.

  34. Ams

    @ Dharm, I was also there. But I don’t want this to be an anti-strike msg. They both have their views, but we also have ours. They teach because we are there.

  35. nikgs

    lol, you have a point ff. I’ve been trying to use the time productively, I guess the best I can do. Have to vent sometimes though.

  36. York Student

    Hey guys… thought I’d share this with you if you havent seen it already…


  37. ff

    nikgs, for sure – I think a lot of people are frustrated – I am. I think it is important that we don’t lose our cool about things though, which seems to be happening a lot (ie. the threats, ramming, knife incident, etc). We have an impromptu opportunity to learn about labour relations and graduate studies politics! ha…
    I think venting can be good, when it is directed constructively.
    Even though I totally oppose the idea of binding arbitration on so many levels, I was really hoping to see more people attend the rally at Vari Hall – let’s get people talking and not just mad and upset.
    The more any of us can learn about the situation, the more we can be proactive in changing, if not this one, perhaps our own.
    We DO pay a ton of money – and I think it is important to remember that TAs and contract faculty are (by and large) themselves recent products of the exact same system; I think we’re all feeling kind of (really) ripped off. But pointing fingers around campus misses the bigger picture.
    (unless education is a business and nothing more)

  38. ff

    York Student,

    Interesting that they decided to downplay the number of people that attended the demonstration against the strike and framed it as anti-union; while not mentioning the number of undergrads out to support the union – instead labeling everyone outside as people from other local unions.

    Oh well, what can you expect from CTV, anyway?

  39. ff

    citytv – same thing

  40. Laura

    Is anyone seriously thinking of transferring universities?

    If this sort of thing is bound to happen again in 2010, then fuck it. I’m going to U of T.

  41. gee

    “We are going without pay from York for as long as we are on strike”

    Funny, how they fail to mention that they are getting strike pay and that if they need more they can apply for help from the union. How many undergrads can apply for help to pay their bills?
    Q. How much is strike Pay?
    A. Members will be paid for a maximum of 20 hours per week (4 hours of picketing 5 days a week). Each member will receive $200/wk for maximum picket duty.


  42. nikgs

    isn’t there also a danger of U of T going on strike in 2010?

    lol, I had the same thought but I dunno which schools are immune.

  43. gee

    Is there a way to research exactly how many CUPE contracts are up for renewal in 2010. Sounds like they may be shutting the city down.

  44. Nathan

    I think… Queens, because their TAs aren’t unionized.

    I know U of T and McMaster are both set to expire in 2010. Maybe Windsor as well.

  45. Andrew

    ff, you’re right to notice that there are problems with university funding. But one can only be suspicious of an outside group — with clear vested interests that don’t align with the university’s — wrapping themselves in the flag of this cause and claiming that they will solve the problem. That cure is worse than the disease.

  46. Laura

    Just Queens? Bah, but I don’t want to leave Toronto…

  47. yorkstrike2008

    I’ll leave Toronto – Queens balls hard.

  48. abc

    ever notice how the very last comment is also the most irrelevant for only YOU? pretty wierd, huh?

  49. Guess Who

    If the university can attempt on ‘wooing’ us by misrepresenting the union as bad and useless, then why can’t the union try too?

    If you see, it was the York administration’s fault they did not respond to the union’s demands . These talks had been going on since July and York turned a deaf ear to it all.

    Now they are suffering the consequences. Serves them right, they fucked the students over.

  50. York Student

    York U posts another update… and reinforces binding arbitration…


  51. yorkstrike2008


    There is such little use in argument here. I have come to terms with the strike. I took the strikers at the Glendon gate some tea and hot chocolate the other day!

    I am a space cadet as well. You’d have to know me…

  52. York Student

    I am sorta confused on what to believe and which side to take with this whole strike matter. Both sides are presenting “the other side is the devil” story and it is easy to get quite confused.
    While York says that the Union and the employer remain far apart, CUPE says that they aren’t all that far apart either.
    We aren’t getting a clear picture of what is happening at all. Student representatives also need to be a part of these negotiations and we need to know what the hell is happening!!!

  53. the more i come here, the fishier everything seems to be getting. now i’m suspicious.

  54. Daisy

    I would just like to say that to whoever is thinking about transfering out of York, do it. I did the opposite, I actually transfered into York last year, and have never been happy with my decision! I am suppose to graduate this June, but with the way things are going who knows what will happen!! I thought York would be a great school with lots of opprotunity and great teaching, I was soon disappointed! I have yet to be impressed. I was quick to learn that York as a whole does not give 2 cents about their students. I understand that there are some very angry people on both sides, the administration and the union, but honestly, this has nothing to do with the 50,000 students! It is beyond frustrating, that we as students are the ones suffering! I would just like to say that this strike better end soon, because York University is definitely becoming a joke across this country! York was suppose to be recognized as a great school, its hard to say this now.

  55. gee

    the union used the analogy of the airplane going down. That when an airplane goes down you are suppose to put on you own air mask before you save the elderly and young. I have no problem with you saving yourself, just don’t push me out of the plane while your doing it.
    Striking is simply putting those who have no influence over the decision at risk. You hold me hostage to get what you want. Whether it be TTC, TA’s or GM’s latest, it’s not fair to throw me under the bus because your boss is not giving you what you want.
    I have read what York has to say, I have read what CUPE has to say.
    I don’t care what either of you want. I want to go to school, I want to learn, I want this to be over.

  56. York Student

    Aaaah! I need motivation to do some work during this strike! I have bloody assignments due and I am just not being able to concentrate!!!

  57. mm


    “unless education is a business and nothing more”. That’s what I am asking to myself since I came to York U.

  58. s~

    hum…does anyone know anything about the osap situations right now? i know the offices aren’t closed, but do i get an extended deadline for um going into inkblotz and getting my thing done….man i dont wanna waste my bus money going there =_=

  59. R

    How will my OSAP entitlement be affected by the strike? As posted on the VPS website

    Provided you have remained registered in the course load you indicated on your fall/winter OSAP application, there will be no impact regardless of the length of the strike. If you are contemplating any changes in your course load, check with Student Client Services before taking your second instalment loan document to the bank in January. A reassessment may be required.

  60. Dharm

    @ AMS, I completely understand your point of view, but we are not against any views, we were supporting students who want to go back to classes.

  61. an opinion

    I just have a question, how long can this strike legally go for? Because if things continue down this path I might as well just start making long-term December break plans.

  62. kid

    Hahaha I’ve read these comments and I find cupe a joke. Ya sure you don’t get the pay you want. But I thought teaching comes first and money comes later. What little value cupe puts on education. Holding students hostage just because you don’t get your money. I thought the whole point of teaching was to pass on knowledge to the next generations.I think cupe has forgotton what being a teacher really means,I’m sure the great teachers of the past who taught children for less money then your getting.people who taught just for the idea of teaching itself. They must be rolling over in their graves. I think students should go on strike for what we have lost. I think students should be the ones out there rallying screaming for better education for teacher who actually care about students. I think a true teacher is extinct, or dying out. How sad what education has become

  63. Basil El-Salviti

    Hey all,

    • Respect CUPE 3903’s legal right to collective bargaining instead of using forced arbitration to score cheap PR points.

    Looks to me like those were cheap shots at undergrads against the strike…just a thought!

    Also, as far as I know, absolutely NO new updates with regards to negotiations.

  64. ff

    Basil, I took that to be directed at the administration – but I think you are right – it could easily be directed at the leaders of YorkNotHostage, although, their TV appearance did no service to undergraduates at York as their spokes people don’t appear to have a very good grasp of the issues, or English.

  65. jojojimbo

    Hey….no one here has the right to be as upset as international students and mature students…because not only is our education being brought to an abrupt halt, but our ability to be self-sufficient as well. York should at the very least do something for us that the union is doing for their TAs and contract faculty…set up some sort of financial relief fund. International students CAN’T work outside campus….and what work is available on campus right now? hmmm …. nothing. How about mature students who live from pay check to pay check and planned to actually start a career, professional studies, or masters by the end of April and yet must now, not only pay additional rent and living expenses…but do it using only the income from the part-time jobs they’ve acquired that would allow them to study as well. Trying to get more shifts while the economy is gone to $hit is pretty tough, let me tell you. All I can say is that all you students out there living off of mom’s and dad’s wallets, don’t start feeling so bad for yourself just yet. I’m about to go broke because my job was on campus…which is now totally deserted and only open half the amount of hours..if that. I want this strike to end as much as the next person, but I’m not as selfish as to hope for only a slight pause in this charade, I want a solution. But in spite of that, I also want a little bit of friggin sympathy from the University I have (like so many other students) invested my time, money, and hopes in. That rally shouldn’t have been set up to end the strike by forcing 3rd party arbitration, it should have been set up to find a solution in a timely fashion (a REAL solution) and to provide support for the students in need. Wanting to force back to work legislation is being just as selfish as either the union or the administration…thinking only of ourselves here and now and not thinking of the ramifications that ignoring this issue at hand will produce for the younger kids in our generation. Grow up people.

  66. yorkstrike2008


    Your reductionism delegitimised you. I am not a mature or an international students and I don’t live off of mom or dad’s wallet. I work 60 hours a week all summer so I don’t have to work during the year. There are many people as such.

    I agree the University should have some financial support for people in strenuous need but calling everyone who isn’t mature or international a money fund child is ignorant.

    International students tend to be quite wealthy – they do pay more than double what we pay…

    Mature students had the opportunity to financially plan more than those that are not. I came out of high school and straight into university. A year or two off, in hindsight, would have made my life right now a lot more comfortable with some more money.

    Don’t be so quick to judge pal.

  67. kjj

    “We are going without pay from York for as long as we are on strike, and most of our members are students who paid fees this term so this is neither fun nor economically stable for us.”

    Actually, CUPE members are getting paid $10 an hour to picket, up to a maximum of $200/week. Frankly, that’s more than some GAs clear in a normal week.

  68. jojojimbo


    Buddy, first of all your rebuttal towards my statement A. Doesn’t address the statement in its entirety, so calling me ignorant for one small piece of the statement in lieu of what the statement actually is trying to communicate is ignorant B. I am addressing specifically those who have a stable source of income, and in no way shape or form did I ever assume anyone not a mature student or an international student lived off of family generated allowances, that truly would be idiotic (it may have not been worded too prudently, I did write this in about 3 min.) C. Try saving up money from a high school only required job while paying rent and living expenses for 2 years while also putting away cash for University…you’d be lucky to save up enough to pay even for 1 year’s tuition. You want to know what’s ignorant? Thinking that a mature student works, saves money, all the while living with mom and dad, paying minimal rent if that. Yeah, you go take 1 or 2 years off being able to keep all the money you make, but don’t go calling me ignorant when you clearly have some strange misconstrued idea of what a mature student really is. As for International students being mostly wealthy…. I’d like to see proof for that statistic, I know 3 international students and 2 of the 3 have to work their ass off just to keep studying here, and they study here so they have their shoe in the door in getting a VISA, PR Card, or some other form of leg up from the 3rd or 2nd world country they live in presently.

  69. jojojimbo

    @yorkstrike2008 cont’d

    Obviously, you don’t live on your own, because you’d understand that $600 a month for a crappy bachelor and paying for food and transportation for 8 months can’t be saved up by working in the summer. Again, the message I wanted to get across was that there are many people out there with a nice support system i.e. staying at home with no additional cost to themselves save the lack of classes (which I am not saying isn’t a terrible fate already, all I’m saying is that there are people out there much more worse off than you) and secondly, that people should think about the present state of affairs, and think carefully of what it will actually cost everyone a little younger than us, if we just force some back to work legislation or 3rd part arbitration….jeeze…didn’t think that would offend anyone…

  70. jojojimbo

    and by 8 i mean 12…..

  71. JMac

    I think yorkstrike2008 hit the nail right on the head there jimbo.

    You come across sounding like you think you are the only one suffering through this disruption and that everyone else except for international students is just a spoiled brat living off mom and dad’s nickel.

    You may classify yourself as a mature student but apparently that’s just a label.

  72. jojojimbo


    You obviously have difficulty reading….see the posts below my initial one….

  73. Jay

    So, yes. This strike sucks. It sucks for everyone, and tempers are getting short, and we’re all looking for someone to blame.
    I want the strike to end as soon as anyone…I’ve been trying to sort out the real topics through all the mud flying through the air. The union is getting a bad rap – the university is misconstruing a lot of their demands – the raise they’re asking for balances out if you take into account the fact that the University is hiring hundreds more TA’s a year, and not giving them any more funding. Yes, it looks like the TA’s are making great money – but if you take tuition into account, they’re only making 10,000 a year, and if they get outside jobs, they lose that funding altogether.
    I can’t blame them for saying, “Please sir, we want some more!” We all know as students how impossible it is to live on less than a grand a month in Toronto!

  74. Jonah

    Let’s also not forget that graduate students are often expected to work 12 months of the year, not just 8….and there is no opportunity for teaching in the summer so this 10000/year has to be stretched even further

  75. Stan S

    As a member of CUPE3903 (unit 1), I think I definitely feel the most for the people in unit 2. Unit 2 is comprised of all of the contract faculty that often have similar/identical qualifications as tenured professors, yet have to reapply for their own jobs each and every year. How can anyone possibly plan for their future at all when there’s no guaranteed job security? Regardless of the numbers being lobbed back and forth by the union bargaining team and the administration regarding wages, everyone can agree that you shouldn’t have to interview for your OWN JOB year after year!

  76. lisa

    yah i agree that the students are being left out of the whole strike, we are given little information about what’s going on, and have no idea what negotiations have been made, and what the university is trying to offer/ and what CUPE wants. I will like the students to have more knowledge about negotiations of the strike. They also give us no info on what’s going to happen to students when we go back to school .we also have no idea how long this strike will last.
    I agree with previous comment that the statment that:
    “Right now we do more than half the teaching on campus but less than 10% of York’s budget goes to our contract”
    this statement definetely makes the CUPE look like they expect to much- the university has many areas that they have to provide funds for.
    I understand that the CUPE contract faculty needs better job security, but i don’t think teaching assistants should complain about wages- they are lucky they get to go to school and get paid for teaching at the same time.

  77. Machinator

    “Yes, it looks like the TA’s are making great money – but if you take tuition into account, they’re only making 10,000 a year, and if they get outside jobs, they lose that funding altogether.”

    Wow – sounds like real life. Boo hoo.

    Holding students over a barrel so CUPE can demand more JOB SECURITY as contract workers, the very definition of a ‘temp’, is so absurd as to defy ridicule.

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