Tuesday, February 3, 2009

The week of setbacks

The 2010 project suffered two major blows this week.

CUPE 3902 unit 1 reached a tentative settlement with the University of Toronto. The complete memorandum of settlement is here, but the following phrase is found on the first page:
The parties herein agree that the term of the collective agreement shall be from May 1, 2008 to April 30, 2011.
There does not appear to be any language in the agreement allowing sympathetic walkouts with other TA unions. So teaching assistants at the University of Toronto are officially on the sidelines for 2010. (Thanks to commenter Nurse 1 for the pointer.)

Meanwhile, as we mentioned previously, CUPE 3903 at York University was ordered back to work. According to the legislation, all outstanding issues -- including contract length -- will be set by an arbitrator. Strictly, this means 3903 could receive a 2-year deal from the arbitrator, but as Doorey notes,
Interest arbitration ... tends to be conservative, as an arbitrator does not usually want to forge novel arrangements that the parties themselves were unable to agree upon. I would be surprised if CUPE wins a 2 year deal ...
We will follow this story closely and report back once the arbitrated contract is set.

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