POSTED ON August 14, 2014
Agreement in principle with the Employer, Ratification Referendum and Information Sessions

As you know, on August 14, after two intense days of conciliation and after almost a year without a collective agreement, CUPE 2626 successfully reached an agreement in principle with the Employer (the University of Ottawa) on the remaining provisions that were subject to bargaining. The new Collective Agreement includes an improved Tuition Rebate (now renamed Tuition Support Benefit), a more comprehensive Maternity Leave, a more coherent anti-harassment policy, a better-funded Financial Aid Fund, increased wages, and more (see our previous update for a list of previously-agreed upon articles).

The Collective Agreement will not come into effect until it has been ratified by the Union members by referendum and by the uOttawa Board of Governors (see below for more information on ratification). However, we can now look forward to beginning the 2014-2015 academic year with a stronger Collective Agreement and better working conditions. If ratified, it is the hope of the CUPE 2626 Bargaining Committee that this agreement will protect our members for the years to come, and act as a cornerstone for the subsequent round of bargaining.

Information Cafés & Ratification

By now, you’re probably curious to find out the details of the agreement, and what that means for you. Legally, the details of the agreement cannot be discussed publicly before it has been ratified by you, our members. That simply would not be fair to you, as only members have the power to decide if they approve the agreement.

Therefore, the agreement has to be ratified by the Union members by referendum. Prior to ratification, while we cannot talk about the agreement publicly, we can talk to you – the members – directly about it. That’s why we are organizing a series of “Information Cafés” (or information sessions) to discuss the agreement our bargaining team has worked so hard to reach. We hope these Cafés will help you understand the many aspects of the agreement prior to voting.

Time and Place of Ratification Information Cafés

  • August 28: LMX 360, 10am to 12pm
  • September 4: FSS 4006, 9am to 12pm
  • September 11: FSS 4006, 9am to 12pm
  • September 16: FSS 4006, 9am to 12pm

The Cafés won’t be the only occasions to learn more about the agreement and ask questions. During the voting period (see below), we’ll hold town halls at RGN (on September 17) and in Tabaret (on September 18). You can also come talk to us directly at our office in UCU 303, Monday to Friday, 9am-4pm. We would also be happy to accommodate you by appointment – just shoot us an email!

Ratification Referendum

Voting for the referendum will start on September 16 and end on September 18. During that time, a polling station will be located in our office (UCU 303) from 9am until 4pm. A polling station will also be available during the September 16 Information Café in FSS 4006. We will also hold a town hall meeting in RGN on September 17 (time and exact location TBD), as well as a longer town hall in Tabaret 112 on September 18 (between 12pm and 8pm). During these town halls, in addition to reviewing the agreement, you’ll also be able to cast your vote. Please bring a piece of photo ID (Student Card, Driver’s License, Passport, etc.), along with your most recent contract with you to vote.

Time and Place of Ratification Vote

  • September 16: FSS 4006, 9am to 12pm
  • September 17: RGN (Atrium), 9am to 12pm
  • September 18: TBT 112, 12pm to 8pm
  • September 16-18: UCU 303, 9am to 4pm

We hope to see you soon! The Bargaining Committee has worked hard to reach the best possible deal for our members. We hope you’ll agree – and we hope to see you during the Cafés and town halls in the coming weeks. Don’t hesitate to contact us should you have any questions!