University of Windsor, faculty at odds over contract implementation
Windsor University Faculty Association calls school's final offer 'unacceptable,' talks have stalled
The University of Windsor will implement a new contract between the school and staff faculty.
The two sides have not come to terms on a new collective bargaining agreement.
President Alan Wildeman informed faculty, librarians, ancillary academic staff and sessional lecturers the school will implement its "final offer," which was presented July 15.
"As a result, effective July 28, 2014, and until there is a new collective agreement, the university will be implementing the terms and conditions of our July 15 offer," Wildeman said in a statement.
Wildeman says the Ontario Labour Relations Act allows the school to implement the contract.
The university informed the Windsor University Faculty Association of its decision Tuesday. The school then made the letter public Thursday.
"It is simply not true that the university has walked away from the bargaining table. Rather, the university is not prepared to bargain with itself in the face of WUFA’s unrealistic monetary expectations," Wildeman said.
Wildeman said "administration remains willing and able to continue collective bargaining."
Anne Forrest, the new president of the Windsor University Faculty Association told CBC Windsor she is in receipt of the letter.
She said she would comment at a later time Thursday.
Earlier this week, Forrest called the final offer "unacceptable."
"The administration continues to demand a settlement that is sub-par in our sector without providing a clear basis for their position," Forrest wrote in a letter to members.
Talks between the two sides have stalled.
Both the school and union have told each other they are available to negotiate several days in August.
Read Forrest's letter below:
On July 15th, the Administration submitted a proposal that WUFA’s Team found unacceptable. WUFA responded on July 18th with a counter-proposal that included significant movement on monetary proposals. The Administration rejected this offer.
Rather than continuing to bargain at the table, the Administration announced this afternoon that it will unilaterally impose the terms and conditions of employment in their July 15th offer. These changes will be effective starting July 28th.
This is an extraordinary step on the part of the Administration. In essence this means our employer is no longer willing to negotiate a collective agreement, but will impose its own terms and conditions.
WUFA’s Negotiating Team rejected the Administration’s July 15th offer because it insists on an unacceptable wage freeze and concessions, in particular:
· there will be no scale increases in the first two years of the contract;
· beginning in the second year of the contract, members who have worked at the University for more than 30 years will no longer qualify for PTR payments;
· beginning in the third year of the agreement, members will be required to pay an additional 1% (for a total of 9%) of salary toward the money purchase component of the pension plan.
The Administration continues to demand a settlement that is sub-par in our sector without providing a clear basis for their position.
The WUFA Team has informed the Administration that they are available for 16 days of bargaining in August. WUFA remains committed to negotiating a fair, competitive, and affordable agreement through the normal collective bargaining process.
Please contact WUFA if you have any questions.
Anne Forrest, President
Faculty Association, University of Windsor (WUFA)
Read Wildeman's letter below: