NDP Education Critic Rosario Marchese and Canadian Federation of Students Ontario Chairperson Shelley Melanson will join representatives of CUPE 3902
Unit 1 at Hart House at 10 a.m., Thursday, December 11 to announce the results of a strike vote by teaching assistants, student instructors, lab demonstrators and invigilators at the University of Toronto.
“Despite a difficult economic climate and an ongoing strike at York University, our members came out to send a message to the U of T administration: we don’t want to strike, but we will,” said Rebecca Sanders, chief spokesperson for the CUPE 3902 bargaining committee. “Our members are looking for a modest increase in our combination of work and funding to move us closer to what U of T itself has described as a minimum living wage in Toronto of $18,000 per year.”
The union is also seeking public health care coverage for international students, who currently pay out-of-pocket for private, for-profit coverage, and decreases in class and tutorial size. More than 5,000 university workers have been without a contract since April 30.
“Class and tutorial size are out of control at this university,” said Sandy Hudson, president of the University of Toronto Students’ Union, representing 41,000 full-time undergraduate students. “Tutorials of 70 to 100 students and classes of over 1500 are not a tenable learning environment. Nobody wants a strike, but students and university employees have to stand together to defend accessible education. We support our TAs for trying to do so.”
WHO: CUPE 3902 bargaining team, NDP Education Critic Rosario Marchese, Canadian Federation of Students Ontario Chairperson Shelley Melanson, undergraduate and graduate student union representatives
WHAT: Announce and discuss results of CUPE 3902 Unit 1 strike vote
WHEN: 10 a.m., Thursday, December 11, 2008
WHERE: Hart House Debates Room, 2nd floor, 7 Hart House Circle,
University of Toronto