January 31, 2013
Our members endured a wet and windy day on the picket line yesterday, but that hasn’t dampened our resolve to achieve a fair and just agreement.
Strike co-ordinator Chris Frazer said, “Morale is high on the lines. It’s been reinforced by the strong show of support from local restaurants, businesses and individuals who have kept a steady stream of food and hot drinks coming to those on the line and at Strike Headquarters.”
The Solidarity Rally on Friday will also be chance for members and our supporters to demonstrate our collective voice in seeking meaningful change at the University in the administration’s relationship with its union and non-union employees.
Meanwhile, StFX administrators continue to use apparently non-existent university funds and their control of campus communication channels to misinform union and non-union members, students, alumni and the Antigonish community about our demands, and their final offer.
What administrators fail to mention in promoting the so-called reasonableness of their offer is that 36% of our members, the most vulnerable in the union, will still need to find another job to make ends meet, even though they carry a full-time teaching load at X. All with no benefits and no job security.
Administrators also fail to mention we are one of the lowest paid groups in the Maritimes, while our administration has the highest paid university President and the highest paid Vice President in Nova Scotia (excluding Dalhousie which has more than four times the number of students).
By putting emphasis on the bricks and mortar of this university instead of the people who teach and learn within them, administrators have failed to recognize and value the importance of the interaction that occurs between students and their instructors. Preserving the academic mission and fairly compensating those who bring it to life is a key goal of the StFXAUT.
Finally, we have confirmation that our chief negotiator Brad Long and AUT president Peter McInnis will meet with University president Sean Riley and Dean of Science Robert van den Hoogen later this morning for information talks which we hope will restart the negotiations.