In a fight to protect their pension rights, administrative, technical and library staff at Carleton University began job action on Monday at 6 a.m.

After negotiations with Carleton University broke off in the early hours of this morning, the union that represents the employees who “make Carleton work” expressed disappointment and frustration at the university’s continued attempts to strip pension language from its employees’ collective agreement.

“Throughout bargaining, Carleton has placed obstacles in the path to a fair deal by insisting that a new collective agreement remove our bargaining rights around pensions,” explained Jerrett Clark, president of Local 2424 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).

“This demand comes at a time when pensions are under attack across the country. But the prospect of a precarious retirement makes CUPE members even more determined to keep their bargaining rights around pensions. They know it’s the best way to ensure their pension will be there for them in their retirement, as well as for future Carleton workers.”

Months ago, the members of CUPE 2424 identified the protection of their pension as a priority for this round of bargaining, voting 93 per cent in favour of job action. This solidarity and determination will be in evidence on Monday morning as workers set up two picket lines at Carleton’s campus, one on Bronson Avenue and another on Colonel By Drive.

“I’m proud to know these CUPE members; they are striking not just to defend their pensions, but to protect the pensions of every worker who comes after them, and even the pension rights of all Canadians,” said Jacynthe Barbeau, national representative with CUPE.