Report Back – Meeting with the Employer – February 16th (Noon–3pm)

On Tuesday, February 16th, the CUPE 3903 Bargaining Team met with the Employer. We would like to thank members in the room for attending as observers, as per our open bargaining practice.

The Employer stated that given CUPE 3903’s insistence on receiving concrete proposals, and optimism around the ongoing mediated sessions with mediator Chris Albertyn, they were withdrawing their extension framework and would instead bargaining regularly with concrete proposals. The CUPE 3903 Bargaining Team was then presented with a number of counter proposals, mainly addressing all-units issues. Members can see the Employer’s counter proposals, and the Union’s latest proposal package here.

The Employer’s counter proposals on all units issues:

  • Equity Proposals (#49 in the CUPE 3903 Extension Framework)
    • Lists what ‘Equity Groups’ are.
    • Amends LGBTQ in the existing collective agreements to LGBTQ2.
    • Provides a definition for the Employer’s understanding of intersectionality.
    • Changes pronouns in all three collective agreements to be gender neutral.
  • Tuition Costs Fund (#5 in the CUPE 3903 Extension Framework)
    • Agrees with the existing CUPE 3903 proposal.
    • CUPE 3903 must provide a report to the Employer on how the funds are distributed.
  • Sexual Assault Survivor Support Fund (#7 in the CUPE 3903 Extension Framework)
    • Agreement with the CUPE 3903 proposal.
    • Asks for a report on how much funding is distributed.
  • Domestic, Sexual, And/Or Gender Based Violence Leave (#38 in the CUPE 3903 Extension Framework)
    • Agrees with the union proposal to change the extend the scope of the leave to include gender-based violence,
    • Keeps the language “their child” instead of the union’s language “anyone for whom they have care responsibilities” to cover a wide variety of care responsibilities our members are involved in.
  • Grievance Procedure (#39 in the CUPE 3903 Extension Framework)
    • Employer-driven proposal to “harmonize” existing articles 4.03 and 4.04 to bring them more in line with “the University’s procedures”; effect would be to create one process around “Sexual, Gender and Gender Identity Harassment, Racial and Ethnic Harassment”
    • Employer-driven proposal to change use of information provided by complainant
    • Employer-driven proposal to adhere to their own timelines (potentially in conflic with Union’s proposal)
    • Employer-driven proposal to give Employer more time to respond (in conflict with Union’s proposal)

The Employer’s Unit 1 specific counter proposals:

  • Assignment Deadlines (#17-20 in the CUPE 3903 Extension Framework)
    • Sets assignment deadlines to 4 weeks before the start of the semester.
    • Adds a time limit of five days for accepting an offer.
  • Ticketed Course Directorship Proposals (#43 and #46 in the CUPE 3903 Extension Framework)
    • Increases number of ticketed CDs to 55 from 50. (Note: this may not be an actual increase due to eliminating the special mention of 5 ticketed CDs from FES).
    • Eliminates special mention of specific unlimited ticketed CDs for the Faculty of Education and FES.
    • Provides two ticketed CDs to every faculty that wants them, instead of every faculty covered under CUPE 3903 CAs
    • 50% of ticketed courses are to be prioritized (not guaranteed) for candidates from Equity Groups, with priority given to those from two or more Equity Groups. If a qualified CD cannot be found, the course will be filled using the normal process as outlined in 10.0.1.

After caucusing, the CUPE 3903 Bargaining Team responded that we appreciated getting concrete proposals, and noted that we are expecting to see counter-proposals on remaining priorities. The Employer stated that there would be more Unit 2 and 3 proposals coming later this week, but noted their “particular difficulty” in responding to proposals around the School of Nursing issues. They also indicated that their forthcoming pass on Unit 3 will propose the continuation of the GAT fund, similar to their most recent Framework for Extension, whereas the Union continues to push for joint oversight of this fund due to the recent misappropriation of funds.

The Bargaining Team will be discussing the response to these proposals during the February 17th Bargaining Team meeting. Members are welcome and encouraged to attend this and all meetings of the Bargaining Team. The meeting calendar and the registration information can be found here.