Strike looming at University of Guelph?

I took this from the U of G website (link provided in a comment here). It doesn’t get too descriptive but it appears that they will be in legal strike position by Dec. 1st. That only means that they have given the Employer sufficient warning of a possible strike and to go on one would be a legal action. That does not mean that they will vote on Dec. 1st for a strike. Unless the process speeds up at Guelph I don’t think they will be ready in time to join U of T and York. This is coincidence, if another University threatens strike it becomes coordinated. It does not say anywhere in this article that contract length is an issue and on the CUPE 3913 site I found the list of demands but contract length was not even mentioned. I will try and fill in this blank this morning. 


Update on CUPE 3913 Negotiations

November 24, 2008 – Campus Bulletin

This bulletin is intended to update the U of G community on the talks between the University and CUPE 3913, the union that represents teaching assistants and sessional lecturers.

The University is currently negotiating a new collective agreement with the union. Negotiations began in the fall and since that time the parties have made progress on many outstanding issues.

The two parties have continued to meet with the assistance of a provincially-appointed conciliation officer, but negotiations to date have failed to result in the signing of a new collective agreement.

As a result, employees represented by CUPE 3913 will be in a legal strike position as of Monday, Dec. 1.

However, the parties have agreed to continue negotiations with the assistance of a mediator Nov. 27 and Nov. 28. The University is encouraged by the union’s commitment to continue discussions and we remain dedicated to successfully negotiating a settlement.

In the event of a work stoppage, the University will work hard to minimize the effect on students, staff, faculty and other members of the community. The University would remain open and continue to provide services.

We will communicate with the community on a regular basis to ensure that you remain informed.

Again, the University is committed to negotiating a fair settlement.

We appreciate your patience and understanding.






Filed under Uncategorized

24 responses to “Strike looming at University of Guelph?

  1. In their February 2008 newsletter (you can find the link on CUPE 3913’s site), the union expresses support for OUWCC (that’s the organization responsible for the 2010 project). However, I haven’t been able to find any discussion of contract length either.

    It’s possible that either 2010 is a point of disagreement with the admin, and the union isn’t discussing it publicly. It’s also possible that the two sides have already agreed on a 2010 expiry date and this strike has nothing to do with the issue.

    I’m trying to track down any discussion of McMaster’s bargaining process to see if they made a public issue of contract length (which they won). I’ll post it on my blog if I find anything.

  2. Basil El-Salviti

    I wish that CUPE 3903 would give us news like ‘the university and the union have made substantive strides in their negotiations, though some elements of the contract have not been settled.’

    Instead, all we hear is that the two entities are separated by wide margins as to the terms of the ideal contract. It’s beginning to irritate me quite extensively.

  3. Still Doing Homework Anyways...

    Just a curious question, because I can’t remember very much from the earlier parts of pre-strike build-up… but did Cupe 3903 mention much about the 2 year contract before actually hitting the picket lines?

  4. Basil El-Salviti

    To the above inquiry, not that I know of. Many of the sticking points that were publicly mentioned related to job security for contract faculty, and increased wages to meet the poverty line.

  5. yorkstrike2008

    Probably a typo

  6. hello, i just recently discovered this websitee, and i really haven’t been following on the issues surrounding this strike… So with that said, can some tell me some predictions on when it will end? please&thank you:P

  7. yorkstrike2008


    Scroll down…

  8. ams

    oh yay my bro goes to guelph so my parents will have both their UNI kids, sitting their asses at home

  9. Commuter

    @ ams

    If Guelph strikes, will they cancel classes? What about if U of T strikes?

    From what I’ve been hearing, if either of those two universities strike, classes would still be in session. I guess York is the only one that cancels.

  10. Still Doing Homework Anyways...

    Thankyou Basil,
    And in regards to your comment above mine, i completely agree with you.

  11. Jim

    Osgoode is resuming classes Dec 1. Nice.

  12. Jim

    Dear Osgoode Community,

    We are pleased to report that at its meeting of Tuesday, November 25, 2008 the Executive Committee of Senate agreed to a request from Osgoode to permit the resumption of all classes beginning on Monday, December 1, except for the relatively small number of courses taught by instructors who are members of CUPE 3903.

    In making its decision the Executive Committee took into account a number of factors, including Law Society requirements for certification of our program and the impact of a continued suspension of classes on the ability of our students to access the licensing process for lawyers both in Ontario and elsewhere. The Executive Community also noted the impact on community legal clinics of a continued suspension and the ability of Osgoode to resume, with only limited exceptions, a full and integral instructional program given the support of full-time faculty and the fact that there are very few CUPE 3903 instructors at Osgoode. Osgoode will ensure that students who choose not to participate in resumed classes will continue to receive the protections and accommodations set out in Senate legislation.

    Under the Remediation Plan approved by Senate Executive, the fall teaching term will be completed over the period December 1 to 19, with the fall term examinations moved to the period January 5-16, 2009. The original exam schedule will be followed during that two week period. Further, all papers and assignments that would have been due the first day of the examination period (December 8, 2008) will now be due on January 5, 2009. The winter term will commence on January 19, 2009.

    Further details respecting the Remediation Plan will be posted on MyOsgoode by tomorrow. Further, each of your instructors will be in touch with you over the next few days to advise you as to whether there will be any changes in the scheduling of classes, the material to be covered in the December 1-19 period and generally on how they propose to complete the remaining work to be covered this term. Students who wish to exercise their rights under Senate policy not to participate in the resumption of academic activities should be in touch with Assistant Dean Gina Alexandris.

    We recognize the stress and inconvenience that the strike has caused thus far, and look forward to resuming the program this coming week.

    Dean & Associate Dean

  13. ff

    So basically if you pay an obscene amount of tuition (ie. international business students, or law students) you get special treatment?

    As an undergraduate who ‘only’ pays ~$6K/yr – I feel like we’re being sent a message about the ‘value’ of our education.

  14. olels

    Osgoode back to school on Monday!

    FF: Please note the reasons for the exemption – it has nothing to do with our tuition, but rather the impact on communities that rely on Osgoode’s services and the ability for third year students to be admitted to the practice of law. That only happens once a year, so the harm would be enormous if they missed out.

  15. Catherine

    Kind of random, but I dropped by York today at around 3ish and there weren’t any picketers at Sentinel or Pond Road as far as I know. I’m not complaining, it’s nice to not waiting 10 min to get into York, but where have the picketers gone…?

  16. Soraya

    They have GGM today and close up early.

  17. Commuter

    Yep, when they have the GMMs they close up shop at 2pm.

  18. Catherine

    Thanks for clearing that up guys!

  19. ff


    you need to expand on what you said. I don’t understand what you mean by ‘impact on communities that rely on (us)’
    Surely, you can reschedule some practical elements, or reach an agreement with the community organizations/union to help, but still not attend/teach class?
    I guess the neoliberal in me says that if you can’t afford legal advice, you don’t deserve it. Except I would capitalize words for dramatic effect.

  20. Guess Who

    Wait so aren’t the Osgoode students screwed over because their exams start on January 5th which literally means as soon as their back from vacation?

    That’s messed up.

  21. Commuter

    @ Guess Who

    No vacation for you! Come back, 1 year! Next!

    That was a Seinfeld reference lol

  22. Guess Who

    Hah please don’t scare me.

    The only thing that keeps me going is the fact I’ll be seeing my family in December.

  23. Worried

    Does anyone know what time the meeting is tomorrow?

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