Bargaining CAAT-A News News

Let’s Stay Connected

College faculty updates are coming

As you know from our previous communication, the employer has requested a forced offer vote. We need to make sure we connect with you regularly to let you know what is going on. To do so, OPSEU is working with Stratcom to keep you and all our members informed through SMS text messaging. We see this as the fastest and most effective way to communicate and mobilize. As you know, clear and timely communication is critical at this stage.

The goal is to obtain CAAT-A members’ non-college contact information, including cell phone numbers. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be rolling out emails, voice messages and live calling to members to update this information. Please take a moment to update your contact information and in particular your cell phone number. It will only take 30 seconds.

Click here to enter your personal contact information.

Alternatively, you can text CAAT-A to 90993 to register your contact information. Please feel free to forward this email to other members who may not have received it.

In solidarity,
CAAT-A Bargaining Team

Bargaining CAAT-A News News

Why Vote to Reject?

Faculty and Students Deserve Better

As you may be aware of by now, a forced offer vote will be held online from 9 am on February 15th to 3 pm on February 17th. You are being asked to vote on the last offer presented by the College Employer Council (CEC), which is virtually unchanged from its November 23rd offer. Faculty have already rejected this with the strike mandate we handed down in December. 

The upcoming vote is a critical one that will have both short- and long-term consequences on collective bargaining in the college sector. 

In the short-term, voting to REJECT means that we will end up with a new collective agreement that is better than what the CEC is presently offering. The CEC offer does not meaningfully address faculty demands around key issues:

  • more time for students, 
  • partial-load job security, 
  • preventing contracting out, to protect the work of counsellors, librarians and all other faculty,
  • faculty consent for how the colleges use our course materials,
  • equity and decolonization. 

Once we reject this offer, the CEC will have no tactics left to avoid bargaining faculty issues. 

For the second consecutive round of bargaining, the CEC has demonstrated little willingness to negotiate our demands, and instead continues to stoke fear of a full strike and threats of reprisal to try and divide faculty. After a five-week long strike in 2017 that resulted in significant gains for college faculty (e.g., academic freedom, increased seniority rights for partial-load members, and the creation of new full-time positions by removing a moratorium on Article 2 grievances), the CEC gambled this round that faculty would not stand together again, even after experiencing significant changes to our working conditions over the past four years. 

But we are, and we are telling them that their strategy isn’t working for faculty. Let’s continue to prove them wrong – not just for our own good but for that of our students. 

If the CEC is successful in having faculty accept their offer, there will be no incentive for them going forward to change their negotiation strategy of delay, defer, deny, and do nothing.

Why would they change their approach if it works for them this time? Taking a forced offer vote–rather than negotiating or agreeing to faculty’s offer to refer unresolved issues to voluntary binding interest arbitration–demonstrates little respect for faculty. If the CEC can routinely avoid negotiating in good faith, our needs and the needs of our students will not be met and our system will suffer as a result. 

Voting to REJECT the CEC offer in mid-February does not mean a picket line–it means a better resolution for all.  

We will send an undeniable message to the CEC, and the college presidents who direct them, that faculty issues must be taken seriously.

In solidarity,
JP, Jonathan, Katie, Michelle, Ravi, Rebecca, and Shawn

Bargaining CAAT-A News News

Forced Offer Vote

For months, CAAT-A faculty have been bargaining for modest, realistic, but much-needed improvements to the College system. The CEC and the Colleges have refused to address these issues, resulting in our successful strike vote in December.

As we predicted, the CEC has called for a forced offer vote (likely to be scheduled sometime in February). The CEC’s offer is virtually identical to the one faculty already rejected in December. 

The CEC has bypassed the bargaining team and our negotiator and called for a forced offer vote—on an offer that again refuses to address faculty issues. 

Nothing has changed from their last offer on November 23.  

As a reminder, here’s what’s wrong with their offer: 

  • it allows for contracting out of all faculty work and contains no protections for partial-load faculty, counsellors, librarians, or coordinators
  • it contains no changes to workload factors, which have remained unchanged since the ’80s
  • it does not acknowledge the need for faculty consent prior to the reuse or sale of their course materials
  • their proposed workload taskforce looks to expand two-tiering of faculty workload (including apprenticeship, aviation, academic upgrading, placements, and “other specialized programs”) 
  • their proposed equity taskforce and roundtable on Truth and Reconciliation are all for show and do not guarantee any changes at all in the next three years and beyond
  • it contains no commitment to improved ability to bridge benefits for PL members, a group already without the same benefits as FT.

Faculty have already told the CEC that this offer isn’t good enough for us and our students.  Apparently, we need to reinforce this message loudly and clearly.  They can take a forced offer vote only once, and this is a further attempt by the CEC to force their position on faculty.

If, following the rejection of their forced offer, the CEC continues to refuse to bargain faculty demands, the faculty team will leave open the door to voluntary binding interest arbitration.  The CEC could have chosen this path at any point to avoid further pressure on faculty and students.  

Rejecting their offer takes away their last tool, and ensures that any final agreement will be better than this. 

Vote to REJECT the employer’s offer. We are bargaining for better: time for our students, quality education for all.  

In solidarity,
JP, Jonathan, Katie, Michelle, Ravi, Rebecca, Shawn