Unit 5 Bargaining Bulletin
December 5, 2023
On Dec. 1, the Bargaining Committee (BC) met with the employer to discuss the proposals that we have brought forward.
While nothing emerging from this meeting is final and/or binding, we have received some notable preliminary responses.
- Terminations, contract extension refusals, and other hiring decisions: grievable. The employer agreed to strike out provisions that prevent these issues from being subject to grievance and arbitration procedures.
- Six-week notice of contract termination from the employer. Last-minute contract uncertainties make planning life changes difficult and stressful.
- A three-year contract. The new Collective Agreement would extend until December 31, 2025.
- X No 24-month contract minimum. Short contracts make postdoc positions costly and inconvenient.
- X No fellowship-to-faculty hiring pathways. The employer has made it clear that faculty hiring is non-negotiable.
We await concrete proposals for: overtime pay, teaching clawbacks and opportunities, sessional hiring priority, research funds, training recognition and compensation, wages, health benefits and services, leaves, relocation reimbursement, and orientations.
Additional table dates TBD (2024).
WHAT’S AT STAKE?
Postdocs are key to research and teaching. Without them, higher education flounders. Despite this, working conditions for postdocs leave a lot to be desired. Many of us work for less than a living wage, receive inadequate benefits for ourselves and our families, and face burnout due to under-recognized labour.
Postdocs are passionate—but passion alone can’t make a career viable. Current and future postdocs need more support to ensure that they can provide the world-class research and teaching that our university is known for.
Now is a key time to get involved, and it only takes a minute. With negotiations under way, we need our members to show the employer that U of T postdocs are willing to fight for what’s right.
- Signing our bargaining pledge sends a clear message to the employer: I support my union in securing better working conditions for myself and my colleagues.
- While signing, consider joining the Contract Action Team to keep colleagues informed (flexible commitments).
- Add your name to the December 18th Solidarity Rally pledge! Join your local in demanding affordable living amidst rising costs!
MEET YOUR CONTRACT ACTION TEAM
“Collective agreements usually run longer than many postdoc contracts. The current negotiations are a rare opportunity for us to re-draft our relationship with one of Canada’s most influential universities, and I am grateful to share in this process with a competent bargaining team.” ~ Alex Tinius, CAT Member
Unit 5 Bargaining team:
Flyer Version of the Bulletin