London – After two days of voting, in over six sessions, Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs) at Western University have stood by their bargaining team and overwhelmingly voted “No” on their employer’s final offer.
Voting took place on April 11th and 12th, in which our members heard from their bargaining team and how this offer fell short in addressing their concerns. Primarily, the agreement failed to address the key issue of GTAs struggling to make real financial gains in the face of rising tuition and the cost of living.
“Our position has always been to negotiate an agreement that addresses the hardships felt by so many Graduate Teaching Assistants at Western,” says Sharon DeSousa, PSAC Ontario Regional Executive Vice-President. “Western’s decision to file a No Board report before our last conciliation meeting, and then submit a final offer, was not the way to show they were taking these issues seriously.”
Western University had requested a “No Board” report from the Ministry of Labour, which had set the legal strike or lockout time for 12:01 a.m. on April 13, 2018. PSAC has held multiple strike training sessions in the event of a strike or lockout, however, we have made our position clear that we prefer to bargain than undertake a labour disruption.
Western submitted their own communication to PSAC and to all Graduate Teaching Assistants on April 10, 2018, stating that they would not lockout our members and are willing to continue to negotiate.
Our PSAC bargaining team will now work to secure bargaining dates to continue our efforts to address the outstanding issues and come to a fair agreement.
For more information or to arrange interviews, please contact:
Lino Vieira, Political Communications Officer: firstname.lastname@example.org 416-577-0238