#StrikeThoughts

 cr: CUPE website

cr: CUPE website

With the threat of this strike looming around us for weeks, Pro Tem took the chance to get your thoughts on the way things have been being dealt with. Note: all opinions voiced here will remain anonymous but should not be interpreted as those of Pro Tem or its current team in any way.

I feel like so many students aren’t getting the full picture of how stagnated talks have actually been because they’re only seeing the university’s updates, which are kept upbeat and positive to try to fool us all into thinking they care about our education and are honestly trying to avoid a strike. Personally, I think if either side were actually trying to avoid a strike &/ “cared about the students and union members”, the university would consider their workers’ needs more carefully and actually negotiate productively. And for CUPE’s part, how about we don’t try to negotiate for everything under the sun to be covered by your employer? Students pay for their own metropasses, why shouldn’t faculty? In the end, the majority of the money be negotiated over is OUR tuition, so why are we the ones constantly getting #Yorkd?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Well, I don’t know if others will agree with me but I feel like the build up to the potential strike this year is far less than the one three years ago, and I don’t know if that means it will happen or not... I just think it’s weird that we have less information about it this time. I feel like three years ago, York gave more updates about the strike. Now that I’m thinking about it, it might have been just during the strike. Either way, I find it weird that students have to opt into getting updates from York.

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There is so much propaganda from both sides about what's going on and who is committing this or that terrible injustice that I can't know who is really the party at fault. It's nice to think that the TA's are fighting the “good fight” against York's corrupt and greedy system, but it's hard to know. What is clear to me is that the vast majority of students don't care about the outcome, they just want their semester to go on unaffected. Like anything, people will tend to not care about something until it affects them personally. The unions know this and that's why a strike is so effective here: the students will quickly turn on the university once they’re the ones being inconvenienced. York has also done a terrible job at communicating what's going on. You go to their website and see nothing that might indicate that the entire semester is a week away from total collapse.

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As an international student, this is really inconvenient and expensive on my part. I just want to go home but instead my summer is cut short and I’m paying extra rent money. Great.

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This might sound awful, but I genuinely don’t really care, you know? I had to go through that strike from a few years ago in my first year and to have to go through another one in my last year... I mean, seriously? Stop playing everyone, [CUPE 3903/York Admin] say that they have the best interests of undergrads at heart, but do they really? Do they?! Because their actions show that they don’t and it’s just left a bad taste in my mouth on both the university and the thought of pursuing a Masters here if this is the type of shit I have to deal with.

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I feel as though the communications from York have been very vague and it's making it very hard to tell if we're going to have a strike or not. Iin first year, we knew right away that there was talk of a strike, but this year we found out a lot later.

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Je suis sûr qu'il y aura une grève. Que c'est que j'en pense? Tout ce que je peux dire c’est que peu importe ce qui va arriver, je ne peux pas le contrôler.

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I feel like the whole thing won’t happen to be honest. But it’s York, so do you think we won’t be getting #Yorkd somehow? Like, how hard is it to just do something with some policy changes to make sure that the people who actually teach us feel supported so they don’t have to do stuff like this every few years?

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So I feel pretty uncomfortable saying this since I work for the university and we have a clause in our contract about being political, but I just don’t give a flying f*ck anymore. I think the strike’s probably going to happen, because do we ever get positive news coming out of this place? Last year, it was all those bomb threats; this year that mess with the GCSU — and by the way, did it ever get resolved? Because that was seriously so stupid to me, all that drama. Like what are we, in university or middle school? I seriously can’t wait to graduate next year!

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I personally don’t think a strike is going happen; I’m feeling pretty optimistic that both sides will resolve all of their issues and we can continue our last month of school in peace!

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Several of my profs have been VERY open about it, especially those in CUPE 3903, so I definitely think it’s going to happen... I’ve also been monitoring the website and stuff non-stop and I hate how much York is covering up and sugar-coating everything this time, it’s SO annoying!

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For me, the biggest thing with the strike situation is the lack of awareness, or perhaps it’s just that no one cares to be informed. I’ve subscribed to the updates (from both sides — something that I also think a lot of people aren’t doing) and I mean, sure it’s a lot to sludge through because it’s really not written for students (just judging by the language and format they use). Honestly, I feel like each side is just writing updates for the other side’s communications spokesperson to dissect for ‘misinformation’. Lately, reading both sides has seriously felt like reading a (super lame) TV soap script; that, or a transcript of a six-year-old’s comebacks to his mom’s inane requests. Either way, it’s ridiculous.

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Honestly, I don’t mind if we do go on strike, and really everyone, everywhere should go on strike, because we all deserve fair, livable wages; decent working standards and hours; and just basic respect in the work we do — no matter what it is!

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I definitely wouldn’t mind a strike. I know that sounds bad, but in reality they can’t delay people’s graduation, so they’ll have to make accommodations. If anything, it’ll just be a nice break that would possibly (also hopefully) push back summer school.