TORONTO, Oct. 15, 2017 /CNW/ - OPSEU CAAT Academic has started a strike at all 24 Ontario colleges and rejected the colleges' final offer. The colleges' final offer is responsive to what the colleges heard at the bargaining table and fair to college faculty.
"This strike is completely unnecessary and unfair to hundreds of thousands of students. We should have had a deal based on our final offer. It is comparable to, or better than, recent public-sector settlements with teachers, college support staff, hospital professionals, and Ontario public servants – most of which were negotiated by OPSEU," said Sonia Del Missier. "The fastest way to resolve the strike is for the union to accept the colleges' final offer, or, at the very least, put the colleges' final offer forward to its members for a vote."
The colleges cannot accept the union's demands that would ultimately add more than $250 million to annual costs, eliminate thousands of contract faculty jobs, and jeopardize the quality of college programs.
Union Demands: Costing and Staffing Ratios
- Unaffordable - Demands remain unaffordable by ultimately adding more than $250 million annually through salary increases and staffing ratios.
- To put the $250 million cost in perspective, the colleges currently spend $750 million annually on full-time faculty salaries.
- Staffing - Moving to a staffing ratio would increase costs through new positions and reduce the colleges' flexibility in meeting the programming needs of our students
- Salaries - The union is demanding 9% over three years for a new full-time faculty maximum of more than $116,000, which is out of line with comparable public-sector settlements.
- 2% per year for three years and a new step in the salary grid
- Contract Faculty Job Loss – Staffing ratios will lead to a net reduction of 3,350 contract faculty jobs.
- 7,380 contract faculty positions will be lost with only 4,030 new full-time faculty positions gained
Union Demand: Academic Control
- The union continues to demand academic control by individual faculty members.
- Faculty are critical to academic decision making but they are not the exclusive voice.
- Our programs require consistent delivery to meet provincially mandated standards and the requirements of accreditation bodies and industry partners.
Union Demand: Staffing Ratios
- Staffing ratios will add hundreds of millions of dollars in costs, reduce program flexibility, and eliminate thousands of contract faculty jobs.
- The reality is that more than two out every three hours in the classroom are taught by OPSEU Academic Bargaining Unit members.
- Full-time faculty are responsible for 49% of all teaching contact hours
- Partial-load faculty are responsible for 22% of all teaching contact hours
- Part-time and Sessional faculty are responsible for 29% of all teaching contact hours
Colleges' Final Offer:
- 7.75% over four years - raises new full-time faculty maximum to $115,378
- new partial-load hourly maximum of $154.26
- improved conversion of contract faculty to full-time positions
- a plan to respond to Bill 148 when it becomes law
- more faculty autonomy over personal workloads
- enhanced benefits, and
- no concessions
SOURCE College Employer Council
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