Striking Ontario college teachers begin voting on contract offer today

14 November, 2017, 14:10 | Author: Valerie Burke
  • A barrel burns as striking faculty walk the picket lines at Fanshawe College's front entrance on Nov. 1 2017

OPSEU says the offer allows the colleges to continue to favour contract and non-full time employees with restriction, to avoid paying "equal pay for equal work" for contract faculty, decreasing the percentage of full-time jobs in colleges and more.

With the vote set to begin Tuesday and end Thursday, the council was reaching out directly to faculty to address what is called the union's "continued misrepresentation" of the contract offer.

Thomas went on to say, "It's important to remember that the fund the minister has announced is being paid for by faculty, not by the colleges". In Sudbury, the strike has affected more than 5,000 students at College Boreal and Cambrian College.

"We're a body of 1,000 students", Eckenswiler says.

Loyalist students were sent emails last week outlining a plan to return to class on November 20.

"I'm not going to pre-empt a vote that needs to take into account the position of all of the members", Premier Kathleen Wynne said last week.

"Students from every campus in Ontario will be filling the hallways and classes of Ontario colleges, to show to everyone, we are ready to learn", the organization says in an email sent to media outlets.

The offer includes a 7.75 per cent salary increase over four years, improved benefits and several measures to tackle concerns regarding part-time faculty.

But the union said the offer contains "serious concessions" that were not agreed to, and which would erode faculty rights and contribute to an unsustainable staffing model.

"Nothing has been removed, nothing has been added that will negatively impact faculty - these are positive gains", she said.

OPSEU also issued a statement Monday morning, advising teachers "to stand strong and vote to reject" the college's offer.

"From the union's perspective, they talk about academic control and they've really determined that it's got to be either (faculty) or (management). Knowing there actually is an end in sight is a good feeling because we've been waiting around to see what will happen".



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