February 6, 2013
The StFXAUT Executive spent last night discussing the offer presented yesterday by X administrators, but after careful deliberation emerged unable to recommend it to Association members without revisions. The negotiating team expects to present several counter proposals at a meeting with administrators later today which they hope will lead to a collective agreement both sides can live with.
The union, however, will not be bargaining in the media the way the employer has done. “If the university would focus on negotiating with us at the bargaining table, rather than trying to speak through the media, we could find a solution to allow us to get back to teaching our students and conducting our research,” said Peter McInnis, president of the StFXAUT. “The anti-union tactics being used by administrators are getting in the way of resolving the strike, putting students in the middle and causing unnecessary distress. We have the right and responsibility to inform our members, not the administration, and we intend to fulfill the strong mandate our members have given us to reach a fair and equitable agreement. The strike will continue until we do.”
Executive members say that by leaking information to the public, administrators have pre-empted the communication process of the union. McInnis said, “They have consistently ignored the role of the union, our democratically elected representatives, and the consultive process. By announcing a deal is imminent, administrators presume to speak on behalf of the union which is unacceptable to our members, and yet another example of their bargaining in bad faith.”
Meanwhile, a number of building trades union workers chose to respect the picket lines the AUT put today at 6 am at the construction site of the university’s two new residences.
The university has advised the union that it intends to install surveillance cameras at the main gates where the AUT is picketing. McInnis said, “This is not helpful to the process and is intended to intimidate our members.”
You can follow ongoing developments in the strike on the StFXAUT website www.stfxaut.ca and via Facebook and Twitter: