Friday, February 13, 2009

They're baaack!

The strike is finally over! After nearly 3 months, all of York's students are finally back in class. T.A.'s are teaching again, but not cheerfully. Indeed, many report that, while not much has been said to them personally, they have been getting, well, quite angry looks from their students in class.
What, did they think that students would simply forget that they've been out of class for 3 months an let bygones be bygones. I doubt the T.A.'s wouldn't think that, but students are angry, and rightfully so.

Many have asked, why it took the provincial government so long to step in and order the union back to work. Well, the short answer is, you do need to give bargaining a chance to work. However, once the parties are deadlocked with no chance of resolving their dispute, only then can the government act. This is what happened here.

We can all rant and scream that CUPE should never have been allowed to go on strike. However, education has not been deemed essential. Under the Crown Employees Collective Bargaining Act s. 30 Someone can only be deemed an essential worker if not doing the work would cause danger to life, health or saftety, damage to property, serious environmental damage, or disruption of the courts. Thus, since education doesn't fit those criteria, you can't necessarily order CUPE back to work based on essential services.

It will be interesting to watch the YUFA negotiations. Our contract ends on April 30th. I hope we don't go out on strike. It would be another added hardship to the students, and faculty.