In response to our multiple requests for the UPEI Board of Governors’ availability to meet to negotiate a collective agreement, the Board has indicated that because we were unable to achieve a collective agreement in the last 11 months, it sees no reason to schedule additional negotiations meetings to avoid or minimize a labour disruption
Going forward, the Board has made it clear that it expects negotiations to proceed exclusively via email. Why they’ve decided at this critical juncture to take such an unorthodox and unpromising approach to collective bargaining remains unclear.
In addition, despite our multiple requests for a detailed and itemized explanation of the Board’s costing of our bargaining proposals, the Board has made it clear that we should not expect additional financial information.
Our recent letters to the Board’s lead negotiator requesting meeting dates are available below:
We are disappointed that the Board did not feel compelled to use our extended strike deadline to work towards a fair and reasonable agreement that would avoid a labour disruption.
The issues we are striking for are real, serious, and affect all faculty and students at UPEI:
- A minimum number of faculty to keep class sizes reasonable and ensure students can get the courses they need to graduate
- Reasonable workloads so faculty can focus on student success instead of just surviving the school year
- Additional supports for researchers so they can provide the learning experiences our students need, and contribute to scholarship at a local, national, and international level
- Pay equity and job security for sessional instructors so our students can be sure that their professors are focused on them, not on figuring out how to put food on their table
- Office, classroom, and lab spaces “maintained in good repair” so we can teach and learn without worrying about leaky roofs, dirty classrooms, or adequate ventilation.
Therefore, pursuant to the PEI Labour Act, as of Monday, March 20 UPEIFA Bargaining Unit #1 will be on a legal strike until such time as the UPEI Board of Governors is prepared to offer a fair and reasonable agreement that preserves the education quality of our institution.
UPEI belongs to the entire community. We encourage students, staff, alumni, parents, and anyone else concerned about the future of the only Island university to join us on the picket line as we stand up for quality education and reasonable working conditions.
Together, we can build a better UPEI!