The College Employer Council’s forced offer fails. It’s a terrible contract that fails faculty, fails students and threatens to harm the entire college system. All faculty should vote to reject the colleges’ offer, because:
(x) It fails to stop contracting out of faculty work and offers no job protection for partial-load, counsellors, librarians and coordinators.
While college sector revenues keep rising ($1.6 billion surplus in last five years), conditions in our public colleges are worsening. While there are more managers, full-time faculty members are not keeping pace with enrollment increases – and that gap is being filled by precarious employees who have few benefits and no job or workload protections. Three quarters of faculty are on 14-week contracts with little to no benefits or job security. The CEC’s latest offer fails because:
- It does nothing to improve employment stability
- It does not require coordinator workload assignments to be reasonable
- It does not allow partial-load faculty with seniority to teach the maximum number of hours
- It would allow the colleges to contract out counsellor work to for-profit companies
(x) It fails to address faculty’s never-ending, forever-growing, workload issues.
It’s hard to believe that college faculty have a maximum of five minutes and 24 seconds per student, per week for evaluation, and that faculty are not provided enough time to make online learning engaging. Our workload keeps growing, but our workload factors for evaluation and preparation haven’t changed since 1985! Our students deserve better. The CEC’s proposed “Workload Taskforce” fails because:
- There is no dispute resolution process and its recommendations would be non-binding, meaning there wouldn’t be changes solidified in the next Collective Agreement
- Unlike every other Committee outlined in the Collective Agreement, it is not co-chaired by the union and employer. There is no such thing as a “neutral chair.”
- It looks to expand the two-tiering of faculty workload by explicitly naming programs such as Academic Upgrading, Aviation, and Apprenticeship as potentially having different workload formulas, such that preparation and evaluation time would be reduced.
(x) It fails to present a strong proposal for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and Indigenization, Decolonization and Truth and Reconciliation. Instead, it offers processes with titles, but no teeth.
These processes, as proposed by the CEC, would fail because:
- There are no dispute resolution mechanisms and their recommendations are non-binding, so they are unlikely to produce the changes that are needed
- The EDI taskforce would report only to the College President, not the Board of Governors
- The scope and mandate for the employer’s Decolonization process is vague and limited.
- Colleges can opt out of implementing any recommendations – in the employer’s words, the process “shall not” duplicate nor conflict with work some colleges may have undertaken.
(x) It fails to allow Partial-Load (PL) faculty to bridge their benefits.
Currently, many PL faculty don’t receive written contracts until midway through the semester when it’s too late to bridge their benefits. As a result, many PL faculty and their families are without benefits during non-teaching periods. The employer’s offer fails because:
- It won’t permit PL faculty to bridge benefits between contracts unless their manager favours them enough to provide a written contract for the next semester, before the current semester ends.
(x) It fails to acknowledge that faculty consent is needed before the college can reuse or sell the course material created by faculty
According to the Auditor General, 11 public colleges have “partnership agreements” with private colleges as of June 2021. The colleges are giving away or selling faculty work and course materials to these institutions at a profit, and without faculty knowledge or consent. This offer fails because:
- It perpetuates the erosion of faculty work.
- It allows Ontario colleges to be one of the few jurisdictions where Intellectual Property rights are not enshrined in the Collective Agreement.
This forced offer fails. Let’s vote to reject it so that we can keep fighting and bargaining for better – more time for our students, fairness for faculty, and quality education for all.
If you have more questions, please go to our list of Frequently Asked Questions to learn more.
Other Bargaining Updates
The college faculty bargaining team has issued the following statement: Arbitrator William Kaplan has imposed a media blackout on the upcoming voluntary mediation-interest arbitration between the colleges’ and college faculty bargaining teams. There will be no further...
OPSEU/SEFPO’s college faculty bargaining team and the College Employer Council have issued the following statement: The parties have reached an agreement to enter binding interest arbitration and the strike that was scheduled to commence at 12:01 am on March 18, 2022,...
Toronto – With some 16,000 college faculty set to go on strike at 12:01 Friday morning, the College Employer Council (CEC) and the faculty bargaining team have agreed to meet Thursday. “We were encouraged that the CEC replied to our letter and have agreed to meet...
TORONTO – Some 16,000 faculty at Ontario’s 24 public colleges say they will go on strike at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, March 18 if the College Employer Council (CEC) does not agree to voluntary binding interest arbitration. The faculty bargaining team sent an open letter...
Started 12:01am, March 02, 2022 Focus Work-to-rule must impact the functioning of the colleges in order to work as a bargaining strategy to bring the Council back to the table to discuss faculty’s needs. The colleges and CEC have chosen to abandon negotiations and to...
TORONTO – Ontario college faculty have rejected a contract offer from their employer, and OPSEU/SEFPO President Warren (Smokey) Thomas hopes the result will trigger a return to the bargaining table. “I am convinced a negotiated settlement is there and within reach,”...
Throughout this round of bargaining, the College Employer Council (CEC) has repeatedly refused to negotiate significant issues regarding workload, staffing, or fairness for partial-load faculty. They have justified their obstinacy by claiming that changes to these...
Information for OPSEU/SEFPO members in the CAAT-Academic Division about the February 15-17 forced-offer vote
A forced-offer vote will be held in February for college faculty members represented by OPSEU/SEFPO starting February 15. The vote was scheduled after the College Employer Council (CEC) asked the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) last week to schedule the online...
The College Employer Council (CEC) filed an application with the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) yesterday for a forced-offer vote. Their latest offer includes only a slight change from the offer they tabled on November 23, 2021. It also follows its decision to...
Toronto – On January 14, 2022, OPSEU/SEFPO filed an unfair labour practice (ULP) complaint with the Ontario Labour Relations Board, accusing the College Employer Council (CEC) and a number of colleges of interfering in the rights of members to support their union’s...
TORONTO – OPSEU/SEFPO President Warren (Smokey) Thomas says a better deal can be achieved and is advising college faculty to reject the employer’s latest offer, after the College Employer Council (CEC) filed for a forced offer vote Monday. "It's still possible to...
TORONTO – OPSEU/SEFPO hopes the leaders at Ontario’s public colleges don’t ignore recent concerns expressed by the Auditor General about an over reliance on international student tuition for the colleges’ financial viability. OPSEU/SEFPO President Warren (Smokey)...