Tentative agreement at Laurier, Brescia launching certification drive, unanimous strike mandate vote at Western
A tentative agreement covering contract academic staff at Wilfrid Laurier University was reached early last Thursday morning. A mediator from the Ontario Ministry of Labour had joined the talks to assist the parties with reaching the agreement, which will be put to the membership for ratification.
A majority of faculty association members at Brescia voted last week in favour of beginning the process towards becoming a certified trade union under the Ontario Labour Relations Act. The association is currently in bargaining.
Librarian and archivists at the University of Western Ontario have voted unanimously in support of a strike mandate. Voter turnout was 80 per cent of eligible members. Their contract expires June 30. The two sides remain apart on many critical issues, including compensation and benefits, complement and pay
equity. “The administration has refused to share important salary data or discuss pay equity, despite the fact that they have a legal obligation to do so under the provincial government’s Pay Equity Act,” said James Compton, president of the University of Western Ontario Faculty Association. The majority of librarians and archivists at Western are women. A Ministry of Labour appointed conciliator has met with both sides, and talks are scheduled to resume June 22.
At the University of Windsor, the two sides have exchanged a complete set of proposals, and the employer’s package contains significant concession demands, including a demand for a massive increase in faculty pension contributions. On the non-monetary side, the demands include having librarians perform faculty responsibilities, such as teaching and scholarly research, with no accompanying increase in pay, prestige, or support. The employer has also introduced a deeply flawed proposal to create a teaching-only instructor position.
Negotiators at the University of Ottawa met twice last week. It is expected that both parties will have tabled all their non-monetary bargaining proposals next week and that the parties will begin to respond to one another’s respective proposals.
In the talks at Brock University, the parties have tabled their non-monetary proposals. It is expected active bargaining will take place this week, including the faculty association’s tabling its monetary proposals.
And at the Ontario College of Art and Design University, negotiators are in mediation with mediator William Kaplan.
CORRECTION: Last week’s pension story contained an error. According to OCUFA Director for QUFA John Holmes, “Please Note that the following sentence in the OCUFA report–’But here’s the thing: the Queen’s pension plan would likely not qualify for solvency relief under Ontario’s new pension regulations.’–is INCORRECT.” OCUFA Report regrets the error.