An update on collective bargaining

Vari Hall
Vari Hall

On March 23, the University and CUPE 3903 met for a bargaining session that focused on Unit 3 and the University’s proposal relating to the Graduate Assistant Training Fund (GAT Fund). The GAT Fund was first introduced into the 2017-20 CUPE 3903 Unit 3 Collective Agreement to incentivize research at the University and to provide high-quality training opportunities in research for graduate students.

While the Letter of Understanding set out in the 2017-20 collective agreement has expired, in response to CUPE Unit 3’s request in bargaining, the University on Feb. 18 proposed:

  • The continuation of the GAT Fund in the renewed collective agreement.
  • Enhanced procedures to ensure that all GAT funds allocated to principal investigators are used for the intended purposes of incenting graduate assistant positions.

The University then followed up with a second proposal to Unit 3 on March 23 that:

  • Doubles the value of the GAT Fund by transferring money from an otherwise currently underutilized Fund.
  • Carries forward into the renewed collective agreement, any funds allocated to the GAT Fund from the 2017-20 Collective Agreement that were not spent for the intended purpose of incenting GA positions.

The University’s proposal to continue and enhance the GAT Fund are part of a continued commitment to incentivize research at the University and to provide high-quality training opportunities in research for graduate students. The University’s proposal also addresses an outstanding grievance filed by Unit 3 with respect to the GAT Fund by enhancing procedures to ensure that GAT funds are allocated only to principal investigators who have entered a GA contract and by carrying forward funds into the renewed collective agreement.

The University looks forward to Unit 3’s response to the March 23 proposal tabled by the University and to our bargaining meeting on March 27.

To learn more, visit https://www.yorku.ca/labour/cupe-3903-negotiations/.