From: news and announcements for members of CUPE local 3903

[3903NEWS@YorkU.CA] on behalf of Michelle Lowry [mlowry@YorkU.CA]

Sent: December 19, 2000 5:48 PM


Subject: Press release


Please distribute widely:




CUPE 3903 angered by York administration decision to seek forced

ratification vote.



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                          

19, 2000


On December 19, 2000, CUPE 3903 (representing contract faculty, teaching

assistants, and graduate assistants at York University), received notice

that the employer has requested that the Ministry of Labour conduct a

forced ratification vote on their latest offer.  This is an extremely

aggressive, coercive, and anti-union move on the administration's part,

one which undermines the democratic structures of our union.  It is also

an affront to the entire York community, and goes against the principles

of collegial and collective decision making that the administration

pretends to uphold.  Through their willingness to force a  ratification

vote York administration has proven itself to be the schoolyard bully.


The administration's offer was presented to the union's bargaining team on

December 14th.  (This was the first offer the union had received since

October 20th. The strike is now into its eighth week). At a General

Membership Meeting later that morning on December 14, our members

overwhelmingly said that they did not want this offer to come to

ratification. On Friday, December 15, 2000, the executive informed the

administration that we would not bring the offer to ratification and asked

the employer to return to the bargaining table in hopes of reaching an

agreement that we could recommend to our members.  But, instead of

continuing to negotiate, the employer is attempting to force us to accept

an offer that the union bargaining team, executive, and membership have

already declared unacceptable.  The bargaining team and executive cannot

recommend this offer to our membership. We will actively counsel our

members to vote NO.


The administration's current offer falls short of our previous collective

agreement.  It demands significant compromises from the union on job

security for contract faculty, and wages and compensation for graduate

assistants.  Further, it offers insufficient protection against tuition

increases for most teaching assistants and no protection at all for

international students and graduate assistants.  The union believes that

these differences with the employer regarding their offer are significant

but not insurmountable.  We encourage and challenge the employer to return

to the table and work towards a deal that we can recommend to our



For more information, please contact:

Michelle Lowry, 416-877-2109, Joe Kispal-Kovacs 877-2103, Joel Harden