Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Crimson and Sentinel: Graduate Students reach tentative agreement with Harvard, go back on wildcat strike at UCSC

The Harvard Crimson reports that the Graduate Student Union and Harvard University reached tentative agreements on three potential contract provisions last week. The two sides have made progress since the January 1 conclusion of a four week strike by workers after four mediated sessions, but have still not arrived at a first contract for the GSU.

Of particular conflict are provisions regarding compensation as well as proceedings around harassment and discrimination complaints.

Meanwhile, Graduate Students at the University of California, Santa Cruz launched an open ended wildcat strike for a cost of living increase, Monday, to meet high housing costs in one of the nations hardest rental markets. The Santa Cruz Sentinel reports that pickets were set up at both main entrances to the main UCSC campus, virtually shutting down all access to the campus at one point on Monday. Striking Teaching Assistants were joined by teaching faculty and undergraduates swelling their ranks, but making member participation in the unsanctioned strike difficult to determine.

Solidarity rallies were reported Monday on other UC campuses. The strike represents an escalation in actions following a grading strike at the end of the Fall semester in which 200 TAs still have not turned in final grades and a sickout last month. UCSC administration maintains that it cannot negotiate with the graduate student workers outside of formal contract negotiations and that the strike action is illegal.

Monday, February 10, 2020

GlobalNews: Mount Alison strike ends as tentative agreement reached

A tentative agreement reached between the Mount Alison Faculty Association and Mount Alison University over the weekend has brought a strike by the schools faculty and librarians to an end, Global News has reported.

Details are being withheld until union members have a chance to agree to the contract later this week, but known points of contention centered around accommodation for faculty and librarians with disabilities, part time compensation, workload, and resources.


Monday, February 3, 2020

CBC: Mount Alison University classes suspended as teaching faculty, librarians strike

Negotiations between Mount Alison University in Sackville, NB and the schools faculty and librarians union broke down Sunday night, resulting in an indefinite strike launched Monday morning.

According to the CBC, despite negotiations late last week and into the weekend and a lot of ground being made on some issues, talks couldn't advance enough on issues such as academic resources, workload, job security, and part-time faculty compensation.

While the university says it offered its last best offer in good faith Sunday night, Mount Alison Faculty Association leadership viewed the proposed deal as a "take-it-or-leave-it" approach and that the university is not willing to actually negotiate on the terms in contention.

This is the second time in six years the MAFA has gone on strike, in 2014 a three week strike only ended after both sides agreed to binding arbitration. This time, negotiators have called in a provincially appointed moderator.

IOL: University of Western Cape (SA) classes disrupted by student strike

The Student Representative Council (SRC) at University of Western Cape (UWC) in Cape Town, SA marched on classes today along with other student-affiliated political organizations. UWC SRC was calling on students to gather for a meeting, according to IOL, as students launched a strike with demands around accommodations, debt clearance, and course registration.

According to the SRC, around 9,000 students have not been able to register for courses in 2020 due to the university's approach to debt clearance which places a large financial burden on students.

SRC is calling on the academic program to be delayed for a week to allow all students the opportunity to sort out their registration.

Monday, January 27, 2020

Scene: Cleveland Public Library, Employees Union reach deal to avoid strike

The Cleveland Scene reports that a deal was finalized between Cleveland Public Library and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) 1199 negotiators. The deal, reached on the last scheduled day of negotiations, will prevent a strike that was set to begin on February 4th following an overwhelming vote by membership to authorize strike action.

The contract must still be ratified by membership at a vote scheduled for this coming Wednesday. No details of the contract have been made public yet.

Friday, January 17, 2020

The Link: Concordia University Library Workers begin Strike Actions

Library Workers at Concordia University voted last November to mandate strike actions after 18 months of negotiations with the university failed to produce a contract. According to The Link, the strike mandate requires the Concordia University Library Employees Union to strike for a total of eight hours, and two and a half were carried out on Thursday, January 16th.

The university and CULEU had been holding conciliation meetings with the last one ending Monday as the two sides ran into "major blockages." The major sticking points appear to hinge around changes the university is attempting to make to advancement schedules, particularly for new employees. Union leadership says that this has been a goal of the university since the union was formed. Library workers see this as a barrier for new employees and an attack on how they have come to understand their place within the university. According to CULEU leadership, the university failed to negotiate on this issue through all of 2019 and shows no signs of accepting employees' "hands off" perspecitive.

Once CULEU has spent its mandated 8 strike hours it will convene a new general assembly to determine next steps.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

January Library Work Life is out!

The ALA-APA has published their January edition of Library Worklife, including an article about the Cleveland Public Library Workers' strike authorization, here: http://ala-apa.org/newsletter/past-issues/volume-17-no-1-january-2020/