CUPE 3903 Members Vote Strongly in Favour of a Strike Mandate at 84%

Since June 2023, the bargaining team has presented 109 proposals and have sat down for countless hours of negotiations with York University, with the collective agreements for CUPE 3903 Units 1, 2, and 3 expiring on August 31, 2023. Despite our best efforts there has not been any significant progress so far at the bargaining table in any of our priority areas and their wage offer is well below inflation. It has been made clear that winning significant improvements to wages and benefits is a central issue for members in this round of negotiations.

Contract faculty, teaching assistants, and graduate assistants came out in force during the Strike Mandate Vote, from December 11th to 18th, to vote in favour of a strike mandate by a strong margin of 84%.  Full results below.

This strong strike mandate shows support for the bargaining team and the priorities being negotiated at the table. It shows that we can get gains on key issues: keeping up with the cost of living; protecting our rights to fair and equitable grievance processes; ensuring resources for members who experience racialized discrimination, harassment, and violence on the job; advancing job stability; and managing workload at both ends — in relation to overwork, and loss of work due to restructuring. It shows that we are unified, and, if necessary, that our proposals are worth fighting for.

The Bargaining Team can now return to the bargaining table empowered to negotiate a contract for all three units that reflects what we deserve! A deal is possible and likely as long as the employer returns to negotiations in good faith, but the membership needs to see real improvements in our priority areas.

Strike Mandate Vote Result Summary:

Unit 1
YES / OUI – 699 (87.5%)
NO / NON – 100 (12.5%)

Unit 2
YES / OUI – 470 (78.1%)
NO / NON – 132 (21.9%)

Unit 3*
YES / OUI – 6 (100.0%)
NO / NON – 0 (0.0%)

Turnout: 1407 (48.8%) of 2886 electors voted in this ballot. This is a very strong turnout for the academic sector, and is near our all time high (53.7%).

* Unit 3—full-time graduate students employed in research, administrative, or clerical work—has been under constant attack since 2016 with York University’s deep pattern of union-busting tactics. Click here to take a deeper dive into the history of Unit 3.