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Possible strikes loom

(Ottawa – October 22, 2019) Faculty associations at Cape Breton, Northern British Columbia, and Algoma Universities are preparing for possible strike action failing resolution in their current negotiations.

Members of the Cape Breton University Faculty Association (CBUFA) voted overwhelmingly last week in support of a strike after negotiations stalled. Unresolved issues include fair teaching and research support and wages. The parties have filed for conciliation. “While frustrating, this is not surprising,” CBUFA president Calvin Howley said. “Stalled negotiations have become common practice not only at CBU but at other Nova Scotia universities.”

For Algoma (AUFA), OPSEU local 685 members have voted 86% in favour of a strike on October 11 and the parties are in conciliation. Issues that remain in dispute are wages, the employer asking contract academic staff to commit to an extra 24 hrs per course for office hours without any extra pay, and the employer wants to significantly reduce the free tuition benefit.

The members of the University of Northern British Columbia Faculty Association (UNBC-FA) have given their bargaining team an 84.2% strike mandate. The employer is demanding concessions on maternity/parental leave, seniority/right of first refusal, and tenure and promotion.