UBC labour woes

By Вen Li

Students at the University of British Columbia could see more strike action by university staff.

The Canadian Union of Provincial Employees Local 2950, which represents more than 1,500 clerical and support staff at UBC served 72-hour strike notice on Wed., Mar. 5 and asked mediator Mark Brown to book out. Job action could take place as early as Fri., Mar. 7.

“[CUPE Local 2950] were forced into taking job action by a university administration bent on concessions such as refusing to fund pay equity and reducing support benefits,” stated the union in a prepared statement “In addition, the university is looking to introduce privatization into campus administration.”

The university did not immediately respond to the strike notice, but did state previously that it was interested in having consistent language in its collective agreements regarding the ability to contract out.

“In essence, the proposed language states that while the university maintains its ability to contract out the work done by bargaining unit members, no CUPE 2950 employees will be terminated as a result of contracting out,” stated the university on Feb. 27.

The CUPE 2950 notice comes less than two weeks after CUPE 2278 which represents teaching assistants, markers and instructors

commenced complete withdrawal of services on Feb. 24.

Currently, 32,376 undergraduate students and 7,045 graduate students attend UBC.

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