UPDATE: No deal reached, X strike continues

February 7, 2013


No deal reached, X strike continues


The strike by academic workers at StFX will continue after university administrators rejected the StfXAUT’s contract proposals this afternoon and walked away from the table.


According to AUT president Peter McInnis, “The university’s so-called improved offer still falls far short of our requests. We can’t and will not move any further. We’ve compromised as much as we can, while trying to meet the clear mandate the membership has given us for meaningful change.”


“The administration has consistently over-inflated our requests by almost three times in its releases to members and the public,” McInnis said. “The difference between the two sides is less than 1% of salary (which is below the cost of living) spread over four years. The gap is only $200,000 which is the equivalent of one senior administrator’s annual salary.”


McInnis added, “The refusal included punitive measures revoking contract terms that we had previously agreed to. This behavior is particularly negative.”


“The administration is also still claiming there are no improvements to be made to management practices, or a reduction in the administrative excesses which have contributed to this financial situation we’re in,” said McInnis. “This strike is about more than money. It is about the future direction of StFX and how those decisions are made.”


During today’s talks, the AUT negotiating team made it clear to administrators their ongoing anti-union tactics and efforts to bypass the normal bargaining process will only prolong the strike, jeopardize the students’ term, as well as the reputation of the university.


In the opinion of AUT lawyer Ray Larkin, the actions of the employer to contact members directly and not to deal with the union Executive, which is the legally recognized bargaining agent, is unproductive and constitutes bargaining in bad faith.


“We are holding firm in our resolve to defend the academic mission at X and to protect the working conditions of our members,” said McInnis. “It is better to keep going than to settle for a regressive collective agreement our members will reject.”


You can follow ongoing developments in the strike on the StFXAUT website www.stfxaut.ca and via Facebook and Twitter: