Canada Vote that could end Ontario’s college strike starts on Tuesday

09:36  12 november  2017
09:36  12 november  2017 Source:   thestar.com

College students demand refund amid faculty strike

  College students demand refund amid faculty strike A group of students who have been out of classes since Oct. 16, have planned a rally of their own Tuesday alongside their striking teachers at St. Clair College. Many of them are fed up with the dispute and unhappy with the contingency plan. St. Clair College shortens holiday break in response to staff strike "We can't stand for that," said Betty Sylvain, a first year accounting student at St. Clair College. "All we ask for is we pay for 15 weeks and we'd like to get what we paid for."As a single mother who uses student loans to pay tuition, she feels cheated in many ways.

The vote , requested by the College Employer Council, begins Tuesday morning and wraps up Thursday, with 12,000 faculty voting on the updated offer on the table before talks broke off and the college took the step of asking the Ontario Labour Relations Board for the one-time measure.

The vote , requested by the College Employer Council, begins Tuesday morning and wraps up Thursday, with 12,000 faculty voting on the updated offer on the table before talks broke off and the college took the step of asking the Ontario Labour Relations Board for the one-time measure.

Striking instructors at George Brown College, St. James Campus, make their way along King St. and around the building on Oct. 16, 2017 after talks broke down. The province's 12,000 instructors will have a chance to voter on a deal starting Nov. 14© Bernard Weil Striking instructors at George Brown College, St. James Campus, make their way along King St. and around the building on Oct. 16, 2017 after talks broke down. The province's 12,000 instructors will have a chance to voter on a deal starting Nov. 14

The strike that has cancelled classes for hundreds of thousands of college students for four weeks will last at least another as a forced-contract vote takes place.

The vote, requested by the College Employer Council, begins Tuesday morning and wraps up Thursday, with 12,000 faculty voting on the updated offer on the table before talks broke off and the college took the step of asking the Ontario Labour Relations Board for the one-time measure.

'Hardship fund' announced for students caught in college strike

  'Hardship fund' announced for students caught in college strike Ontario's Liberal government announced Friday it will help students struggling financially due to the faculty strike at community colleges. Advanced Education and Skills Development Minister Deb Matthews has instructed colleges to establish funds out of the savings they accrue from not paying their faculty to support students finding themselves in financial hardship.“All students are struggling with continued uncertainty,” Matthews said in a released statement.“They are worried about how to pay for unexpected costs like additional rent or cancelling long-standing travel plans to be home with family.

Vote that could end Ontario ’ s college strike starts on Tuesday - Duration: 4:43. Ontario College Strike - Day 26 - PARTIAL-LOAD FACULTY: WHY YOU SHOULD VOTE NO - November 2017 - Duration: 3:07. xpdncvideo 694 views.

Faculty report for work Monday and 500,000 students follow Tuesday to jump- start a semester stalled five weeks ago by what became the longest college strike in Ontario history. Political recriminations continued after MPPs spent barely 35 minutes debating and voting Sunday on the

At that time, and after four days of marathon bargaining, the two sides had agreed on the contentious issue of full-time staffing ratios, agreeing to a provincial task force to study the issue, which is included in the offer instructors are to vote on.

On salary, the union and colleges were within one-quarter of a per cent. They could not, however, find common ground on academic freedom, the major sticking point that remains.

The vote will be conducted online or by phone, and requires approval by 50 per cent plus one, of all those who vote. (That means if all 12,000 vote, 6,001 would have to cast ballots in favour for it to pass.) Results will be available Thursday afternoon.

If faculty approve it, classes would likely resume by Tuesday or Wednesday of the following week.

500,000 students 'caught in the crossfire' during Ontario college strike

  500,000 students 'caught in the crossfire' during Ontario college strike From mental health issues to concerns about graduation, many students say they're frustrated amid the strike involving 12,000 college workers. "Those of us with anxiety and depression often cope by being busy," said the 24-year-old.

Final vote likely on weekend, classes could resume next week, College Employer Council says. Ontario announces legislation to end college strike . Students could return Tuesday : CEC.

Faculty across the province began voting on Tuesday on the latest offer from the colleges — a move the colleges requested after talks with the Ontario Public Service Employees Union broke down. “We can ’t just introduce back-to-work legislation because (we) want the strike to end ,” she said.

If it is rejected — and it already has been by the union’s bargaining team — then it is expected, given the length of the strike, that the provincial government will have to intervene fairly quickly with back-to-work legislation.

J.P. Hornick, who heads the college bargaining team for the Ontario Public Service Employees Union, said “there are serious concerns and questions about the ways the electronic vote will be conducted, and I know that OPSEU has raised these” with the labour board.

The union is urging its members to reject the offer, saying it wants the colleges to return to the bargaining table.

In a recent memo to members, it said the strike will be over soon regardless, and that approving the offer is the “worst outcome.”

“Whatever way the strike is resolved, the government has made clear it will step in so that the semester is not lost,” says a memo to members.

“… It would be nonsensical to vote for this bad offer when a better resolution is just around the corner. This is the time to press on vigorously, not to capitulate.”

Ontario college strike now at 29 days making it the longest the province has seen

  Ontario college strike now at 29 days making it the longest the province has seen College faculty begin their “forced vote” on a contract offer on Tuesday, as their strike — now in its fifth week — becomes the longest job action in their history. At 29 days so far, it is longer than the three previous strikes — in 1984, job action lasted 24 days, in 1989 it went on for 28, and in 2016, 18 days.The 1984 strike ended with back-to-work legislation, and for the subsequent two, both sides agreed to mediation or arbitration.

Voting is underway on the latest contract offer from the employer that could end a strike by college faculty in Ontario that is into its fifth week. Online voting began at 9 a.m. Tuesday and will continue through Thursday.

The Ontario Labour Relations Board has scheduled a vote next week for college faculty who have been on strike since At Tuesday ' s news conference, the union maintained it would advise members to vote no. A vote of 50 per cent plus one is all that is required to accept the deal and end the strike .

However, some faculty have grown weary of getting by on strike pay for more than a month, and several have emailed the Star saying they have lost more in wages to date than they will gain through their next contract.

Others, however, say the academic freedom issue is too important and they need to stand strong on the picket lines. Hornick called the vote reaching a settlement “through coercion rather than negotiation.”

The forced vote does present risks for both sides.

Maurice Mazerolle of Ryerson University’s Ted Rogers School of Management, called the vote something like “the ‘hail Mary’ pass for management.”

Mazerolle, an expert in labour-management relations, said for the union, a yes vote puts them at risk, and the “bargaining committee normally resigns.

“But if members reject it, that’s it for management.”

After a strike has dragged on, however, different factors come into play. “All the membership knows is ‘I’ve got no money coming in, and I’ve been on strike for three or four weeks’ … that’s the other thing management is counting on — they are counting on people voting with their paycheques.”

Striking faculty reject colleges’ contract offer

  Striking faculty reject colleges’ contract offer Striking faculty have rejected an offer from Ontario’s colleges, meaning their job action — the longest in their history — continues. News of the vote result prompted Premier Kathleen Wynne to say she’ll immediately meet with both sides. “Students have been in the middle of this strike for too long and it’s not fair,” she said in a statement, adding that on Thursday afternoon, “I will be meeting representatives of the College Employer Council and OPSEU to discuss how we can resolve this situation immediately and get students back to class where they belong.

Article Continued Below. Meanwhile, individual colleges continue to make plans for when the job action ends — whether it be by the direct vote , a During negotiations, the growth of contract and precarious work at Ontario ’ s 24 colleges was a central concern. Talks ended when the strike began Oct.

Ontario to introduce back-to-work legislation that would end the college strike by faculty, though opposition from the Matthews also said that the semester can still be salvaged. “We are approaching the time where we will start to see people with lost semesters but we are not there yet,” she said.

Also, he said, is academic freedom “something you really want to pound the streets for? Probably not. And it’s not an issue you can negotiate at the bargaining table. It’s too complicated” and requires a lot of research.

“You need a joint task or a committee to deal with it through the life of the contract.”

Rafael Gomez, director of the Centre for Industrial Relations and Human Resources at the University of Toronto, said the employer is taking a chance with the vote, but believes the lengthy strike is a sign “that the college system has outgrown its bargaining structure” where one body, the College Employer Council, negotiates for all institutions.

“There was a homogeneity to the colleges 50 years ago when they started, in terms of their size, their assortment of degrees they were offering, and over time, they’ve diverged.”

He thinks a tiered bargaining — with schools divided by size and range of programming and other criteria — is worth considering.

He called the forced vote “a desperation ploy on the part of the employer.”

David Doorey, a labour and employment expert at York University, said the forced vote can “poison the bargaining climate” if their offer is rejected, and create divisions among staff if it is approved.

It can, he added, “be an effective divide and conquer strategy.”

“I think the parties understand that the threat of back to work legislation is there if this stoppage drags on much longer and this will shape their strategies,” said Doorey.

“Given that it appears the parties are close, there’s a good possibility that a failed final offer vote could lead to an agreement to refer the outstanding issues to arbitration, which would be the outcome always if legislation is introduced. But that is by no means certain.”

Students who quit college because of strike can get tuition refund .
Students who quit college because of strike can get tuition refundThe aid for full-time domestic and international students will cover unexpected costs such as child care, rebooked train and bus tickets and January rent.

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