Open letter to President Lenton by YUFA Executive Committee Reply

April 20, 2018

Dear President Lenton,

In your recent message to the York community (“Two days of mediation produce no settlement”), you claim that the CUPE conversion program remains a “fundamental issue” in the current labour dispute. You state that the University’s proposal of two conversion appointments (which falls below CUPE’s previous contract and the historical average) enjoys the “public support of many full-time faculty in the York University Faculty Association.” You add that “Academics support University’s position on conversions.”

It is incumbent upon your office to provide evidence for such statements about the opinions of our members. This letter did not disclose that your claim of “public support” refers to a petition you received from 152 members of YUFA who have organized a special group to discuss issues such as conversion appointments and the CUPE strike. Everyone is aware, including yourself, that among the more than 1,500 members of YUFA there are diverse views on the conversion program. The program has nonetheless been approved in every YUFA collective agreement voted upon by our members in the last thirty years.

It is disingenuous in this context that you failed to consult with YUFA before claiming that academics support the bargaining position of the York administration in this strike. By misrepresenting the views of YUFA members, your statement appears calculated to drive a wedge between YUFA members and our colleagues in CUPE 3903 upon their return to work. We ask therefore that you issue a correction, making it clear that you are in receipt of the signed petition of approximately 10% of our membership, but that you are not able to make a reliable claim about the opinion of YUFA members on the issue of the conversion program in the current negotiations.

Executive Committee
York University Faculty Association

Statement of Solidarity from the Queen’s University Geography Graduate Student Council (GSC) Reply

Government mandates and university administrative demands force graduate enrolment to grow at unsustainable rates, despite departments’ inadequacy to support such enrolment. Academic career opportunity upon graduation is increasingly dismal. The use of graduate and sessional labour for cost-cutting in course delivery is deeply troubling and shameful. The corporatization of Canadian universities is resulting in increasing economic inequality between high-level administration and academic staff, as well as rising tuition rates despite stunted education quality. Amidst this environment of inflated tuition and decreasing quality of education, graduate funding remains relatively stagnant in the face of the steadily-rising cost of living in cities like Toronto.

Statement by Science & Technology Studies Graduate Program Executive Reply

On March 24, 2015, the STS Graduate Program Executive unanimously passed the following motion:

Having reviewed the graduate courses and consulted with current course directors, STS Graduate Exec has determined that under present conditions it is impossible to maintain academic integrity; therefore graduate classes are suspended until a settlement is reached and the strike is over.

Letter from Dr. Peter Flaherty (CUPE Unit 2) to President Shoukri and Provost Lenton Reply

Dear colleagues,

It is with the greatest respect and a full appreciation of the complexities and difficulties you face that I write to express my concerns about the current situation we are all coping with. I am a member of the York contract faculty (CUPE 3903 Unit 2) and teach in the Faculty of Education. I am also a former secondary school teacher and department head with many years of classroom experience at that educational level. York University has been a significant part of my life – academically, professionally, and even personally – since I first entered Glendon College as a member of its founding class in 1966. Over my years as an undergraduate and graduate student, I earned the majority of my degrees including my doctorate from this great university, where I had the honour and privilege of studying with some of its finest professors.


Statement from Coordinating Committee of the School of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies Reply

March 23, 2015 statement:

Given the recommendations of LA&PS Faculty Council of March 23, we have conducted a review of our courses and concluded that the academic integrity of all courses is compromised. As such, we have revisited the remediation plan of March 17 and have determined that as of March 23, all undergraduate and graduate courses at both Keele and Glendon campuses are suspended until a settlement is reached and the strike is over.