York says Union is not motivated

So York has released another update filled with of coy.


The University remains prepared to negotiate with CUPE 3903 for a fair and equitable settlement. However, the delays over the past two weeks give us reason to question whether CUPE 3903 is prepared to do the same. 

Saturday November 15: At the CUPE 3903 general membership meeting a motion was passed preventing the bargaining team from modifying any of its 150 outstanding proposals. Asaresult, no bargaining occurred following that meeting. 

Thursday November 20: At the CUPE 3903 general membership meeting a new motion was passed giving the bargaining team flexibility to negotiate with the University. 

Saturday November 22: CUPE 3903 arranged to meet with the mediator on Monday, November 24 to review its proposals. 

Monday,November 24: The mediator met with the union on Monday afternoon. Later that evening, the mediator asked the University to give consideration to meeting with the Union. The Union’s requested meeting date was Thursday November 27 – seven days after the new motion was passed by the Union membership giving the Union’s bargaining team the flexibility to negotiate. Given what is at stake for our 50,000 students, this one week delay in getting to the bargaining table does not suggest urgency on the part of the union to reach a negotiated settlement. 

The University has advised the mediator that we will meet with the union on November 27. That date will mark the beginning of the fourth week of the strike and concern for our students must be paramount. In entering that meeting, it is our hope that the Union is prepared to significantly modify its current proposals totaling nearly 41% over two years, to enable the parties to negotiate within a reasonable framework for settlement. 

In the absence of real progress at the negotiating table, the University will continue to recommend binding arbitration as the fastest way of getting our students back to class. Update on the Status of Negotiations with CUPE 3903 


Oh yes, the University is the innocent lamb…


This looks like progress but nothing has changed. The University still wants binding arbitration if no fruitful negotiations (ie. a 3 year contract) ensue. The Union will not accept that. 3903 is a very radical local of the CUPE Union and they will not capitulate to York’s hard ball games and miss the 2010 collective bargaining fiesta. 




Full update available at: http://webapps.yorku.ca/NegotiationsUpdates/doc/Communication8.pdf#mce_temp_url#



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24 responses to “York says Union is not motivated

  1. mixed feelings

    I really hope that York doesn’t give in to a 2-year contract. That would just screw me, and many other students over again in 2010 which is complete BS. I’d rather have school the entire summer than go through another strike in 2010!

  2. Nellyli

    so what’s the point of meeting up on Thursaday anyway? I bet Union will give in. errr, another week to go.

  3. Pat

    @ mixed fealings

    Ya I agree I’ll rather waste a summer once than another in 2 years

  4. There are eleven CUPE locals for TAs in Ontario. Five already have contracts expiring in 2010: Ottawa, Ryerson, Brock, Windsor, and McMaster.

    It looks like the remaining locals are working towards the 2010 goal. Here’s the interesting part: York is on strike right now, fighting (in part) for a 2010 expiry date. And U of T has just called a strike vote, with 2010 again as an issue.

    Without U of T and York — Ontario’s two biggest universities — the 2010 project will likely fail. So this is the battle to watch.

  5. Curious Yorkie

    yeah… this definitely is going to be interesting to watch. who will give in? Or will they (at least for now)

  6. Krisen

    What a load of crap. At this point, I hope we’re back in January

  7. MR Two

    Like I’ve been saying, nobody cares about us..

  8. student

    Remove TAs from Unions.

  9. Just Another Yorker

    My mom heard on CP24 today that York is thinking of cancelling Reading week. How legitimate do you guys think that is?

  10. Relaxo-Grad

    ….just remove the power of the Union to cover ONLY workplace safety and insurance issues (which is what Unions were made for in the first place)

  11. GG

    WTF is going on, this is fucking unfair, i’m an internaitonal student, i have ticked on 11th december, cuz my last exam is supposed to end on 10th december, now what am i supposed to do??? Cancel my fucking ticket and buy new one??? Who is gonna pay fucking TA’s???? Fuck this, you Canadians don’t know what real poverty is. Fuck this Western Culture.

  12. Soraya

    Does anyone have a connection to the union that knows exactly what they have changed?

  13. yorkstrike2008

    @Just Another Yorker

    This is a very real possibility. Reading Week is not an official holiday – it is more of a tradition and will be among the first times to be used for remediation.

  14. yorkstrike2008


    They have moved the demands from 150 to 20 to make negotiations more feasible, given the negotiating team flexibility to bargain and reduced financial demands significantly (I have set to see hard figures on this point).

  15. Hullo

    Just relax. Uni won’t screw us that bad. If they do, We will just file a class lawsuit lol!

  16. Worried

    I am concerned that if U of T goes on strike and York stays on strike that this will be a longer than anticipated strike. Does anyone else feel nervous about the two largest universities being on strike at the same time?

  17. york student

    i have to agree with a lot of the others who have posted above. I would much rather have my summer cut short and avoid a strike in 2010, the year which I will be graduating in…..York cannot cave in to the two year contract, and hopefully U of T won’t as well so that CUPE can’t have their selfish desires met.

  18. Nathan

    I really think that if the strike lasts to a certain point where the Admin is staring at the cancellation of a semester, rather than cave, the admin will simply reopen school for everyone, and face the headaches of delays/harassment/people choosing not to cross the lines. Only if THAT doesn’t work, will the Admin cave to the Union’s demands.

  19. Commuter

    @ Nathan

    This was mentioned on a Facebook group, but it is relevant here. If you reopen the school for everyone, then you open the door for some people to have all of their classes, most of their classes, and people like me who rely on contract faculty and TAs – very few if any of their classes.

  20. Cupe Doll

    A good portion of 3903 members are contract faculty. Mostly old(er) folks with absolute zero job security. And getting 3903 contract faculty some job security has been the most legitimate issue this strike. Maybe the only issue with which the general public resonates any sympathy.

    That’s the issue 3903 always waves at the media. But what 3903 is really after is a 2 year contract to participate the general strike in 2010. So here’s what’s gon’na happen. 3903 will totally fold like broke accordions on the contract faculty job security issue — in order to try and get a 2 year contract.

    3903 will sell every interest of it’s most vulnerable members down the river. Because many the more militant in 3903 aren’t happy just striking. They need a war. They need to be striking for blood against “neo-liberalism” — not just for wages or job security.

    Undergrads aren’t the only ones getting shafted by 3903 militant ideology. Plenty members of 3903 are too.

  21. JMac

    Unfortunately for that group of contract faculty, which I believe comprises less than 25% of the strikers, they are lumped in with a bunch of TAs who have absolutely nothing to lose monetarily during a strike.

    Their job security is obviously a real issue but in the future they might be better served by seeking out a different union to represent them.

  22. Cupe Doll

    You’re absolutely right, JMac. Trouble is, contract faculty “seeking out a different union” would mean separating from this one. Guess what? We tried. Way more than once.

    Difficult to accomplish. Separating isn’t much different from union busting — far as those left behind are concerned. Not only that — all local 3903 needs to legitimate false strike issues? Point at how the employer abuses 3903 contract faculty. Meanwhile, is it in the employer’s best interest were contract faculty to separate this local? Nope. Contract faculty are the soft, vulnerable underbelly of 3903. Comes time for final offers and forced ratifications — who’s gon’na cave first? Who can the employer count on to accept its final offers? Contract faculty. Of course.

    Contract faculty vulnerability is great opportunity for vultures. Both 3903 and the employer.

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