TORONTO, Ont. - Over two days of voting, members of CUPE 3903 sent a clear message to the York University administration by rejecting the offer on which they were forced to vote. Members of all three units voted 63% to reject the offer. The union’s bargaining team has requested that the employer be ready to return to the table by 1:00 p.m. Wednesday.
“This result is not a surprise. We told York’s administration that they were wasting everyone’s time by forcing us to vote on an inadequate offer, but they insisted on putting us through this expensive and time-consuming process,” said Tyler Shipley, CUPE 3903 spokesperson. “Now that the charade is over, let’s get back to the bargaining table and get a settlement so that everyone can go back to class.”
About 2,400 members of the union participated in the two-day vote and reaffirmed their commitment to many of their key priorities, including the central questions of job security for contract professors and funding for graduate students.
Elizabeth Brule, a contract professor for more than a decade, explained her unit’s “no” vote.
“We are fully qualified professors at an institution of higher learning and despite all of our years of experience we are still forced to re-apply for every single course we teach,” she said. “How are we supposed to budget for mortgage payments and child care when we have no idea what our income will be from session to session?”
The union will be available to media at 9:00 a.m. Wednesday at the Montecassino Hotel, 3710 Chesswood Drive, to address the key outstanding issues in the strike and to stress its commitment to settling the strike at the bargaining table in a manner that is fair and expedient.
CUPE 3903 represents about 3400 contract professors (Unit 2) and teaching, graduate and research assistants (Units 1 and 3) who have been on strike since November 6.