At a meeting in Convocation Hall, CUPE 3902 members have voted no to sending the tentative agreement between the University of Toronto and CUPE Local 3902 Unit 1, which has about 6,000 members, mostly teaching assistants, to a ratification vote.
The outcome of the vote means that the unit’s members are now on strike.
Reports indicate that an estimated 90 per cent of the members in attendance voted against the deal.
An earlier CUPE Local 3902 press release said that the Unit 1 Bargaining Team voted unanimously to recommend the tentative agreement, which was reached around 2:45 am this morning after both sides agreed to extend negotiations.
“We are disappointed that while a tentative agreement unanimously approved by the Unit 1 bargaining team was reached late last night, Unit 1 members who attended a meeting this afternoon voted not to send the agreement to the full bargaining unit membership for ratification,” said Jill Matus, U of T vice-provost, students & first-entry divisions in a statement.
Early reports suggested that some members were dissatisfied with the tentative agreement. “I appreciate the efforts of our bargaining team, but this is not even close to the bargaining commitments we set months ago,” said one commenter on the press release.
“We… like many undergraduates did not want a strike. However, we believe that the grievances expressed by teaching assistants are legitimate and ultimately, the members of 3902 decided that the proposed agreement did not address these grievances. This could have been avoided had the university produced an acceptable contract,” the Arts & Science Students’ Union executive said in a statement.
Students can find course-specific announcements regarding the strike on Blackboard.
More to follow.