Bargaining Bulletin #1 (Dec 7, 2023)

From Dec 7, 2023 email titled: “CUPE 1230 — Bargaining Bulletin #1 First Day at the Bargaining Table”.

Full proposals are linked at the bottom of this post.

Hello CUPE 1230 Members,

Yesterday, December 6, 2023 both the Student Casual and Full-Time & Part-Time contract negotiation committees met with the Employer and began bargaining our next collective agreement.

As we have promised, this round of negotiations, we will be transparent. No confidentiality at the table. Attached are copies of the language and wage demands we provided to the Employer and the University’s list of issues they would like to discuss.  These proposals are just the beginning. We will be making more at upcoming rounds at the table. But these are just proposals, they don’t become real until the other side sings on the dotted line. How do we make these proposals a reality? It starts with unity, unity across our two units and unity across CUPE locals on campus.

December 18th Holiday Solidarity Rally

Remember this winter, over 8,500 CUPE members across three locals are negotiating. This is why on December 18th all CUPE locals 3261, 3902, 1230, USW, and student groups on campus will be come together for a Holiday Solidarity Rally at Simcoe Hall from 3 to 4:30pm where we will be sending in a delegation of members to address the Governing Council. Join us!

Respect and Dignity demand has management confused and hurt

Management has noticed our solidarity already. At the table they addressed the issue of respect and dignity and stated that managers are confused and hurt that we don’t feel respected because after all they do a great job, and you work at UofT, world class institution and top rated employer. We know management is out of touch. Wear your “Respect and Dignity” button until we win. Don’t have a button? Email [editor’s note: this email is defunct; please email instead]

Our demands are substantial; but they are not at all unreasonable:

  • Full-Time & Part-Time have tabled 5.7%, 3.0%, and 3.0% across-the-board (ATB) wage increases, one in each year; and

    • Alternative Work Arrangement language

    • Unlimited healthcare appointment leave

    • Increase Vacation Severance Pay from 15 days to 20 days

  • Student Casual have tabled even larger demands which would bring hourly wages in line with a living wage in the City of Toronto ($25.05), even for our lowest paid SLA’s and

    • $2 Lead Pay for any Student Casual assigned additional responsibilities

    • 1 sick shift per month

    • Reimburse required doctors notes when sick

The response to our demands was pretty resounding, with the Employer making it clear that such a living wage is not something the University of Toronto is even willing to acknowledge as a valid concept or discuss for our SLA’s, GSLA’s, and AHDA’s, our student staff members.  They made it clear that Student Casual hourly wages aren’t designed to help make ends meet.  We must fix this!

None of us needs an Economist to know how unaffordable living here has become, and many of us are working simply to pay tuition or help make food or rent.  This is NOT some side gig just for a bit of fun or experience, and hourly wages are NOT some honorarium given out of the kindness of the Employer’s heart.

What is next?

We will be meeting again after the holiday break, but our work doesn’t stop now. This year we are building a campaign that will require all of us to be involved. We have a team of members called CATs (Contract Action Team) who have volunteered to be the point person for specific areas or groups of workers, your group doesn’t have a CAT? Email [editor’s note: this email is defunct; please email instead]

We will be providing an in person update at the holiday party/gmm tomorrow. Additionally, we will be scheduling a zoom meeting to update members and review our plan to win.

These fully transparent updates are also something new for CUPE 1230 bargaining, and it is something we plan to continue going forward.

In Solidarity,

CUPE 1230 Student Casual & FT-PT Bargaining Teams

  • Gabrielle Browne

  • Maya Larrondo

  • Murat Simsek

  • Paul Whittam

  • Amanda Wagner

  • Julia Greenfield

  • Pat Grace