Teaching assistants strike at University of Toronto
Tentative offer rejected, talks continue between union and York
Teaching assistants and other staff at the University of Toronto will be on the picket line on Monday, having rejected a tentative offer that was tabled during late-night talks on Thursday.
"They felt it did not go far enough to address their core concerns," Black told CBC News.
CUPE, which represents about 10,000 non-tenured academic staff at both UofT and York University, says the main issues are wages, healthcare benefits, unclear hiring practices and a lack of job security.
The union says the average take-home pay for graduate students, after tuition is deducted, is about $15,000 a year, well below the poverty line.
Furthermore, the union says contract professors earn a third of their permanent staff peers for teaching the same classes.
Black said the union is willing to return to the bargaining table, but has not heard from the university.
York University said its talks with the union will continue through the weekend.
CUPE says its 4,000 members at York will be in a legal strike position on March 3.
The union is seeking wage increases and three-year contracts to ensure job security for its members. Instructors are currently hired on a per-term basis.