Following more than six months of bargaining over 29 different sessions between York University and CUPE 3903 and into the eighth week of the strike; April 23 marked the beginning of a more formal phase of the provincial government’s Industrial Inquiry Commission (IIC) in which the parties made formal submissions on the key matters in dispute and the underlying principles at issue at the Commissioner’s request.
William (Bill) Kaplan is the sole member of the Commission and worked closely with both parties last week in a final attempt to mediate a settlement or get agreement on the need for interest arbitration to decide on what’s fair to resolve the strike, in the interest of our students. Unfortunately, CUPE 3903 ended its participation in those conversations on Friday, April 20, rejecting the opportunity to end the strike immediately.
Yesterday, both York and CUPE 3903 made detailed presentations to Mr. Kaplan on the key matters impeding a settlement and the underlying issues of the strike. The submissions served to reinforce the distance between the parties and the need for arbitration as the only viable means of ending the strike.
York has bargained in good faith with a commitment to reach a negotiated settlement since the outset of negotiations in early fall. On March 1, the University presented CUPE 3903 with its best offer – the best of its kind in the sector in Ontario. Unfortunately, CUPE 3903 members rejected that offer, and the strike began on March 5. The parties met again to bargain on March 20, and York presented improved offers to demonstrate our continued commitment to reach a negotiated agreement and end the strike.
CUPE’s final positions remain out of reach, with many demands unchanged – from both a financial and fundamental policy perspective.
York remains committed fully to cooperating with the IIC and continues to be open to arbitration on all outstanding issues as a means to offer the certainty that York’s 50,000 undergraduate students deserve.
York’s full submission is available below.
Click to read Part 1 of York's Submission.
Click to read Part 2 of York's Submission.