Happy Labour Day

It’s back to work! 🙂

Welcome back and Hello new members:

The Local (this is short for CUPE local 4207 ) produced a newsletter that will be distributed in paper form on campus – watch for it in your department mailboxes.  This year is an exciting year. For new members, and also returning members, it is super important to know that Unit 1 is in bargaining. If you hold a position of a sessional Instructor, Teaching Assistant, Lab Demonstrator, Marker/Grader or a Course Coordinator,  you are represented by Unit 1 collective agreement  (a contract between the union and the employer), which expires on September 6. This means that the period of negotiating a new contract, called collective bargaining, is under way.

Unit 1 is the largest bargaining unit of our union, over 1,000 members strong.  There are many aspects of our working conditions that need to be improved, and this is the time when such an improvement can be achieved through negotiated language in a new collective agreement.

We have created a new website for bargaining updates only http://cupe4207bargaining.ca. For a reference to what our members’ wish to change about our working conditions, check  out the list of concerns and priorities collected in a membership-wide survey conducted last January: Bargaining Priorities.

The ball is just starting to get rolling for Unit 1. Our bargaining team (members of Unit 1 who got elected at October General Membership Meeting [GMM] to represent members of Unit1 in negotiations) has been preparing for negotiations in the few preceding months and has met with the Employer for the first time on September 1. This first bargaining meeting is for introductions and to exchange proposals of the language each side aspires to have in the contract.

The work of the Bargaining Team now is to respond to Employer’s proposals.

There are three bargaining units in our local. Unit 2, a very small unit of ESL Coordinators, has entered negotiations already this summer and in fact, didn’t have a good run at it. The union filed for conciliation, which means a Ministry of Labour-appointed conciliator will attempt to get both sides closer together in resolving their differences. The conciliation is scheduled for September 21.

We are not alone in bargaining this year! Nine other academic locals are also negotiating new contracts. That’s why we have COAL! Coalition of Ontario Academic Locals. See the SOLIDARITY PACT if you haven’t already!

Your input and engagement in any form and shape is tremendously important. Do not hesitate to contact the local and start shaping our world 🙂

Have a productive semester!

Stay tuned.