Teaching assistants and contract instructors at Carleton University in Ottawa have voted in favour of new collective agreements negotiated after a strike that began March 27, according to Local 4600 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).
“This has been a very difficult round of bargaining, and our members have let us know that they are still angry the agreements don’t fully address the level of poverty on campus,” said Noreen Cauley-Le Fevre, president of CUPE 4600. “At the same time, we are proud of many important achievements in this agreement.”
When talks broke down, TAs and contract instructors withdrew their services and began a strike that lasted for nine days.
The new three-year agreement includes wage increases of 14% for contract instructors, moving them closer to their counterparts at the University of Ottawa. Graduate teaching assistants will see increases of 9% and undergraduate TAs will get 13.5% in an effort to close the pay gap between graduate and undergraduate TAs, as well as end-of-term premium pay for TAs. The agreement also includes new paid gender affirmation leave, improved parental leaves, and historic new language recognizing intellectual property rights for contract instructors.