Strike Hardship Fund

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What is the Strike Hardship Fund?

The Strike Hardship Fund (SHF) is designed to assist CUPE 3903 members who are participating in the strike and is intended to supplement strike pay. The SHF supports members in purchasing items they need for picketing or alternate duty (Section A) and in dealing with financial hardship resulting from reduced income during the strike (Section B).

How much can I expect from the Strike Hardship Fund?

Maximum amount to be issued per member is $600, with the exception of Leaves — see below.

Except in cases of exceptional hardship, members will be given a portion of the amount they are adjudicated for at first, to ensure as many members can access the fund as possible. If funds allow, first disbursement cheques will be topped up as soon as possible in a second disbursement.

Throughout the strike, other unions and organizations make donations to assist CUPE 3903; these are added to the SHF. If donations allow, we will be able to issue funds above $600. This will be automatically done by the committee; members will not need to reapply.

A. Specific Strike Related Costs

If a CUPE 3903 member who is eligible for strike pay requires something to help them fulfil their strike duties, they can apply for this portion of the fund.

To qualify for funds you will need to provide evidence of:

  • need: briefly tell us what you need and why you need it. For example: “My shoes are not waterproof. I need a good pair of boots to keep my feet warm on the picket lines.”
  • cost: provide the receipt for the purchased item. If you cannot afford to purchase the item in advance, please contact the SHF directly at

For transit costs, provide us evidence of the cost per trip (not necessary for TTC) and the number of times you attend York to picket, as well as the number of times you usually attended York per week before the strike.

B. Financial Hardship

This part of the fund is intended for members that are experiencing financial hardship as a result of the strike.

Eligibility: Applicants must be a CUPE 3903 strike pay eligible member who either:

  • has participated in the strike (picket line or 8th line); provides proof of income, AND had a pre-strike income of less than $2300/month plus $1500 /month for each dependent (including spouse)


  • has exceptional circumstances

Leaves: Members who would, bar the strike, qualify to begin a Leave (Compassionate Leave, Bereavement Leave, Sick Leave, Paid Maternity Leave, Paid Caregiver Leave, Caregiver Leave (unpaid), Paid Adoption Leave, Jury Leave or Transsexual Transition Leave) under their Unit 1, Unit 2 or Unit 3 Collective Agreement, are understood to be in exceptional circumstances. If you are in this situation, you may be eligible for the Strike Hardship Fund despite reduced participation or non-participation in strike work, and you may be eligible for funding of up to $1,000. On your application, please note the circumstances which would otherwise qualify you for a leave, the date when they began, and any additional expenses you may be facing as a result of these circumstances, such as travel expenses or supplies. We will respond with a request for any needed documentation. Please do not send medical documentation with your application. Medical or other sensitive documentation will be reviewed only by Sheila Wilmot, the CUPE 3903 Equity Officer.

How do I apply for the Strike Hardship Fund?

Members can fill out the 2018 Strike Hardship Fund form (Word doc or PDF) and submit the necessary supporting documents to or drop them off at Strike Headquarters (45 Four Winds Dr, Unit Q-1).

Questions: If you have questions, please contact the SHF Committee at

Criteria for the 2018 Strike Hardship Fund were set by Strike Committee on March 12, 2018.

Leaves and Appeals criteria and procedures were set by Strike Committee on April 18, 2018.