Some University of Windsor faculty honours CUPE picket
Two sides remain far apart on job security, pay equity issues, union says
The president of the Windsor University Faculty Association tells CBC News that a number of faculty members are refusing to cross picket lines manned by striking members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees.
About 300 members of CUPE Local 1393 who work at the University of Windsor are on strike after talks between workers and administrators broke down at midnight Sunday.
WUFA president Brian E. Brown said some classes are being cancelled because of those faculty members who refuse to cross the picket lines.
Students won't be penalized, the association said.
Talks between the university and union broke off about an hour Sunday after a midnight strike deadline.
The local represents skilled trades and professional staff, including equipment technicians, carpenters and graphic designers.
CUPE Local 1393 president Dean Roy said the two sides remain far apart on a pair of key issues.
"The big issues are job security…and the pay-equity system. The issue was not money in the least. It was really those two things," Roy said. "I hope the strike is as short as possible. We hate impacting the students. It's not something I want to happen.
"My daughter starts university Monday. She'll be facing her father's picket lines. It's not a happy situation."
The university says classes aren't affected by the strike. The strike has forced the cancellation of some events at its upcoming 50th anniversary celebrations.
On the other side of the table, Alan Wildeman, the university president, said he's disappointed.
"They've walked away from greater job security, a wage increase and a commitment to maintain employment, not to start outsourcing all their jobs," Wildeman said.
"So they're on the street and we'll look forward to the opportunity to get our employees back to work someday."
The school has posted a statement on its website advising students that classes will continue and the campus will remain open.
"I'm kind of in the middle," student Satpreet Sidhu said. "I see why they want some fairness. They're asking for some reasonable concessions. "I think the university should give it to them.
"I do think they struck a little premature. They were in the middle of negotiation.
The CUPE Local 1393 bargaining team had received a strike mandate earlier this summer.
The CUPE workers have been without a contract since April.