| |

CUPE 3902 – CUPE 3261 Joint Bulletin (February 29, 2024)


Our coordination and solidarity have already secured significant gains for thousands of CUPE members in both 3902 and 3261. You have shown that when teaching assistants, caretakers, postdoc researchers, and food service workers stand together, you can achieve real gains that improve your working conditions and students’ learning conditions. Still, many important issues remain unresolved by the University’s proposals; strike preparations will continue!

Just a few weeks ago, there were very few substantive proposals tabled by the employer. Since then, you – in CUPE 3902 Unit 1, Unit 5, and CUPE 3261 – voted in huge numbers for a strike mandate, and mobilized the U of T community and allies to participate in an E-Action to let U of T know just how much support is behind your bargaining campaign. Yesterday, you and hundreds of your co-workers attended a rally on campus, which turned into a march on the boss to deliver a majority petition containing thousands of signatures from CUPE 3902 and 3261 members pledging support for the key demands of your bargaining campaigns. 
It doesn’t end there! Today as you read this, there are info pickets across U of T’s three campuses. It’s you – you showing up and speaking up since the first bargaining updates in November –  that has spurred movement at the table. Only your continued organizing and pressure can secure real wins. Solidarity works!


CUPE 3261 

Since your last update, CUPE 3261 held negotiations for various units on Feb 22, 23, and 27. Your bargaining team continued to see movement during this time. Some highlights are 89 Chestnut’s sick leave being brought into alignment with FTPT, Casual’s minimum wage increased to $20/hour by 2025, and temporary assignments to a lower class in FTPT limited to 6 months instead of indefinitely. The University has also proposed eliminating the probationary rate in both FTPT and 89 Chestnut.

FTPT has decided to move on wages, now asking for 9%/2.5%/2.5% and Chestnut is seeking wage parity with FTPT. You have also proposed to institute a “longevity” pay raise of 2.5% for members with 10 years of service.

You continue to reject the benefit increases and paid personal days and are asking for that to go into wages, or decreased benefit premiums. Find detailed updates on your proposal tracker at by end of day Thursday.

When you met with the employer on February 27, 2024 all three units (FTPT, Casual and 89 Chestnut) made counter-proposals emphasizing your priorities:

FTPT89 ChestnutCasual Unit
1. 3.5 year contract expiration December 31st, 2026, align with Chestnut.

2. ATB 9%, 2.5%, 2.5% and 1% for the last 6 months.

3. 10-year pay rate @ 2.5%.

4. Reduce benefit costs.

5. Investments in food services: cook realignment and eliminate the shift premium carveout.
1. Align our wages with the FTPT unit. A food service worker or caretaker at UofT should earn the same no matter the workplace.

2. The same vacation policy as the FTPT unit. It is only fair.

3. The same shift premiums as FTPT.

1. 3.5 year contract expiration December 31st, 2026 to align with 89 Chestnut. 

2. Equal Pay for Equal Work.

3. Establish minimum $1.50 gap from minimum wage.

4. Equitable shift distribution.

5. Casual Benefits Plan.

6. Improvements to clothing allowance and conversion.

All three units return to the table this Friday where the University has signaled they will counter with improved global package proposals for all units.

CUPE 3902 Unit 1

Since your last bargaining bulletin update, Unit 1 has met with your employer four times: on February 23, 26, 27, and 28. Remember, you tabled a full package of proposals on January 15, the very first day of negotiations – it was only today that they received substantive counter-proposals.

On February 26, U of T delivered their first serious counter-proposal for healthcare, which you can read about in detail in our proposal tracker. You’ve since returned another counter-proposal on healthcare to push for your remaining priorities.

On February 28, your employer issued their first response to your transit proposal. You and your coworkers have been vocal about the growing unaffordability of public transit, and have demonstrated your commitment to fight for free transit. The University’s response admits the high cost of transit, its impact on the environment, and your demand for affordable access to public transit. So, your employer proposed forming a Joint Task Force to “secure new public transit fare discounts for bargaining unit employees.” 

Is this free transit? Are “discounts” enough? Is this enough for you and your coworkers, who are struggling to keep up with the cost of living and often have to commute to other worksites across the GTA to conduct your work contracts? 

The employer has still not brought a counter proposal on wages. In January, you and your coworkers tabled a 10% increase for 2024 (retroactive to January 1), 5% in 2025, and 4% in 2026.

Just a few weeks ago, your employer would not even consider the possibility of subsidized transit. Now, we’re seeing some movement –  any movement at the table is a direct result of your continued and growing collective pressure on your employer. But the employer’s proposals around the most critical issues – wages, benefits, transit, and job security – have not yet met your proposals, which means there is more movement on the horizon. Your organizing is working, so keep building momentum!

CUPE 3902 Unit 5

On the morning of Tuesday, February 27, Unit 5 returned to the table. Here are some brief updates:

  • You proposed adjustments to our previous global proposal (introduced February 8) which the employer responded to at our last table date (February 22), presenting these refinements in a second version of our global proposal
  • Your employer did not bring forward any formal counters
  • You secured an agreement from the employer that postdoctoral fellows will no longer have their research salaries “clawed back” when taking on additional Unit 1 teaching contracts
  • You continued to press the employer to agree to a fourth year for the collective agreement (recognizing the many benefits of aligning expiry dates across units/locals) and commit to higher across-the-board wage increases, reflecting dramatic inflation and cost-of-living increases in recent years (as well as the artificial lowering of wages caused by Bill 124, which was recently ruled unconstitutional)
  • You continued to refine our proposals to demonstrate that we are bargaining in good faith, but remain committed to fair negotiation of our key priorities (e.g., minimum salaries, across-the-board wage increases, professional development funds)
  • You await the employer’s next global proposal, hopefully including outstanding responses to a number of our proposals, as early as Friday, March 1


Is your collective pressure working? YES! But you have to keep it up if you want to see continued movement at the table. This week, take part in actions to keep raising the temperature, including sending our e-action form, attending today’s info pickets, and joining a strike subcommittee.


It’s time for the U of T community and allies to tell the University’s Governing Council that they stand with you! Send our E-ACTION to your family and friends now!

Info Pickets
Thurs., February 29 (today!)

Sign up to attend an info picket across the three campuses to practice picketing, make signs, and show UofT you’re ready to strike.

Join Subcommittee

Sign up for a strike subcommittee to help coordinate strike administration, finances, communications, and picketing.


Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *