On Thursday, April 13 CUPE 233, the worker’s union representing custodians, groundskeepers and maintenance workers at TMU began a work-to-rule job action. On Monday, April 17 CUPE 233 went on legal strike after no agreement was reached with the university over the weekend, the first labour disruption in 25+ years. The CUPE 233 bargaining team has told the University Administration that it is available to resume negotiations at any time if the employer is prepared to bring a new proposal.
The TMSU represents more than 43,000+ 1st & 2nd entry full-time undergraduate degree students. The students’ union has long understood that the working conditions on our campuses are our learning conditions. CUPE 233 has been negotiating a new collective agreement with the university over the past several months with the hopes of addressing pay gaps and disparities in pension contributions.
The TMSU has worked with the All-Union Coalition to share messages of support with striking workers. Ultimately, it is up to everyone at Toronto Metropolitan University to do their research, have conversations and decide how they feel about the current situation.
Students that want to support striking workers have a few options. Below are some suggestions:
- Send a letter to the TMU President
- Learn and share information about the CUPE 233 strike and the issues at the bargaining table
- Report and encourage the reporting of issues about facilities to the the university, such as heating, cleanliness and building conditions, that are not being maintained or in disrepair, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call in to Fixit at 416 979-5091
- Join and support picket lines
Linked below you can find a number of resources available to better understand the strike. Students are encouraged to think critically about the information received during this period and remember that striking workers are advocating for fair wages, fair practices and a better TMU campus.
- EyeOpener Article: theeyeopener.com/2023/04/cupe-members-to-begin-work-to-rule-ahead-of-tmu-strike/
- CUPE 233 Website & Updates: 233.cupe.ca/
- Sign CUPE 233 Petition: cupe.on.ca/cupe233/
- TFA and CUPE 233 Information on Pension Dispute: https://www.rfanet.ca/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Behind-the-Current-TMU-Pension-Dispute-.pdf
- TMU Website & Updates: torontomu.ca/bargaining-updates/
The TMSU will continue to keep our members informed as the strike continues. We are currently working on a statement to the university to support students that do not wish to cross the picket lines. We encourage members to check back on this page for further updates.