“With cooperation from Council at the bargaining table I believe we can settle this strike in short order.” — JP Hornick, OPSEU's Chair of the faculty bargaining team
Toronto (16 Nov. 2017) — Ontario college faculty have rejected a contract offer from their employer and are calling on the College Employer Council to come back to the table this afternoon and finish the job of negotiating a collective agreement.
Rejection of final-offer vote not surprising, solid support from academic workers
In voting this week, 86 per cent of faculty voted to reject Council’s November 6 offer. Ninety-five per cent of the 12,841 people on the voters’ list voted.
“No one is surprised that college faculty rejected the Council’s forced offer. It was full of concessions and failed to address our concerns around fairness for faculty or education quality,” said JP Hornick, Chair of the faculty bargaining team for the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/NUPGE). “We stand with hundreds of thousands of college students when we say "enough already."
OPSEU/NUPGE and students want employer back at the table to negotiate fair deal
“Let’s get back to the bargaining table and complete these negotiations," Hornick said.
The forced-offer vote was a one-time option allowed under the Colleges Collective Bargaining Act.
“It is unfortunate that Council extended our strike and kept students out of class for an extra 2 weeks by calling for this vote,” said Hornick, “but now that it’s over, it’s time to move on."
Hornick continued, “With cooperation from Council at the bargaining table, I believe we can settle this strike in short order.”
OPSEU to College Employer Council: Settle the strike or resign
Warren (Smokey) Thomas, OPSEU President, congratulated faculty for standing up for a better college system by rejecting the offer.
“Calling for this vote was a bully move by Council,” he said. “At a time when we were only a few steps away from getting a deal, they overplayed their hand and robbed students of 2 weeks of their education."
“Council’s bargaining team should either settle this strike immediately, or resign and be replaced by competent negotiators," Thomas said.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 370,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. — NUPGE