Bargaining Bulletin #2 (Feb 9, 2024)

From Feb 9, 2024 email titled: “Bargaining Bulletin #2 – Update”.

Full proposals are linked at the bottom of this post.

Hello Everyone,

As indicated in the most recent bargaining e-mail, on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, both the Student Casual and the Full-Time & Part-Time contract negotiation committees met with the Employer for our second round of bargaining.

Management demonstrates a lack of urgency

At our first round of bargaining on December 6th, almost two months ago, we provided our wage proposals for both units. Management showed up to bargaining without any counter proposal to wages. We understood this to mean that they don’t see it a priority to make significant progress towards reaching an agreement.

Local 3902 and 3261 request a no-board and schedule strike votes

As you may recall, we decided to coordinate our bargaining among our two units, as well as with the 5 other employee groups from Local 3902 and 3261, who are also bargaining with the university. Currently there are over 8000 CUPE members negotiating with the University across all campuses. On December 5th we, along with 3261 and 3902, asked the Ministry of Labour to appoint a Conciliation Officer in the event that we will need assistance to mediate an agreement. This also means that, should negotiations continue at such a slow pace, we have the option to request a no-board report from the Conciliation Officer, which would start the process for us to be able to take strike action if necessary. While we are currently nowhere near this point and remain hopeful that we will reach a fair agreement, it is important to note that Local 3261 and 3902 have reached the point where they requested a no-board report yesterday February 8th during a press conference at Simcoe Hall. This is the first time 8000 UofT workers will be in strike position at the same time.

Teaching Assistants and Post-Doctoral Fellows begin vote on strike mandate

Local 3902 also started their own strike mandate vote yesterday for both their Teaching Assistants and Post-Doctoral Fellow units. If you are a student casual worker at the library and also teach a course, you are also a member of Unit 1 at Local 3902. You are currently eligible to vote on that strike mandate, the negotiating committee is recommending a YES vote.  More information on Teaching Assistants strike vote here.

What happened at the bargaining table on January 31st?

No written proposals were provided, however, they verbally proposed the following:

  • Employer would agree to our proposed increase FT-PT Paid Personal Leave (PPL) from 4 days to 5 days.  However, they stated they are interested in taking away our ability to take these days in one hour increments and move to a half day or even full day increments.
  • There is verbal agreement to increase FT-PT safety shoe reimbursement to $200 per year and replacement if/when necessary outside of this.
  • Some form of the Early Retirement Bridge outside of the pension plan and the Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program are expected to return.
  • Extended maternity and parental benefits are expected to increase to 78 weeks to align with changes to federal Employment Insurance (EI) benefits.

In addition to this, CUPE 1230 tabled the following new proposals/demands (PDF’s attached):

  1. FT-PT & Student Casual Article 6: Negotiating Committee — Language changes to negotiate as a joint committee for both bargaining units. This proposal is critical to ensure we fully use our collective power at the bargaining table and the employer cannot divide us.
  2. FT-PT Article 37: Occupational Health and Safety — Language changes to align with other Unions on campus and to resolve information disclosure issues which were urgently needed during COVID-19.
  3. Student Casual Article 19: Bereavement Leave — Extending bereavement leave from the current, where if a close friend/family passes away one can simply go home with pay for that shift, to having all scheduled shifts for five days thereafter also paid out in full.  This is designed to allow for proper time to grieve and recover.

What’s Next?

A special CUPE 1230 Bargaining Update Meeting will take place from 1:00PM to 2:00PM on Thursday, February 15, 2024, in the Robarts Library 4F Blackburn Room.  A reminder e-mail with online synchronous connection information will be sent next week.  This will allow for an opportunity to discuss where negotiations are at, proposals and our plan to win the best possible agreement for both FT/PT and Student Casual Workers.

The upcoming bargaining dates are as follows:

  • Wednesday, February 14, 2024: FT-PT & Student Casual
  • Tuesday, February 27, 2024: FT-PT
  • Friday, March 1, 2024: FT-PT & Student Casual

Dignity & Respect: United We Win!

Coordination is ongoing between CUPE Locals 3261, 3902, and 1230, and the Employer has taken notice.  It is essential we keep up the pressure and achieve the better working conditions and wages all workers deserve.


In Solidarity,

CUPE 1230 Student Casual & FT-PT Bargaining Teams

  • Maya Larrondo
  • Murat Simsek
  • Paul Whittam
  • Amanda Wagner
  • Julia Greenfield
  • Pat Grace