Dear Fellow UWOSA Member,
The University of Western Ontario Faculty Association – (UWOFA) will be in a legal strike position on Sunday, November 13th at 12:01 a.m. and set a strike deadline for Monday, November 14th at 11:59 p.m. This does not mean that UWOFA will strike; nor does it mean that Western Administration will lock out Faculty on Tuesday, November 15th but it does mean that either is possible.
What is a strike?
Strikes are often a last resort; if progress is not being made during negotiations. Strikes are an important tool and a recognized right for all unions.
What is a lockout?
A lockout occurs when, during negotiations, the Employer refuses to allow its employees to work in order to force a settlement. In this instance, Western Administration may refuse to allow striking faculty members on to Western’s campus, park in Western parking lots, have access to their Western emails, or enter any Western building for any purpose (including eateries and washrooms).
How do I know if UWOFA has chosen to strike?
Please check the UWOFA website, under 2022 Bargaining (https://www.uwofa.ca/2022-bargaining/) for more information.
HOW DOES A POTENTIAL UWOFA STRIKE IMPACT UWOSA?
You Must Report to Work.
In the event that UWOFA does go on strike, our Collective Agreement, Article 5: Strike or Lockout, specifically Article 5.05 states, “Where individuals in a labor dispute, other than those in the bargaining unit, engage in a strike and maintain picket lines, and where employees of the bargaining unit could suffer personal harm, the employer will endeavor to safeguard such employees.”
This means we, as UWOSA members, are required to go to work, even if this means crossing a picket line. It is Western administration’s responsibility to ensure that when you cross the picket line that you are safe to do so. If you do not feel safe crossing the UWOFA picket line, please contact special constables (formerly campus police) or your supervisor to assist you to safely cross the picket line.
Getting to Campus.
In the event UWOFA chooses to strike or the University’s Administration chooses to lock UWOFA members out, please allow yourself extra time to get to campus, and time to cross the picket line.
By Automobile: If you are driving a vehicle, please be respectful to those picketing at the crosswalks and at the corners of the entrances to Western University.
By Bus: LTC is also unionized and so city buses will not enter campus during a strike or lockout. LTC will reroute so as not to cross picket lines, and may instead stop on Richmond Street/ Western Road instead. Please check with LTC for more information.
How do I cross the picket line?
When passing by or crossing picket lines, please be respectful and courteous to UWOFA members. If a UWOFA member asks why you are crossing the picket line, simply state that the UWOSA Collective agreement requires you to report to work.
Please avoid arguments or confrontations of why you are crossing, you may simply state that in the UWOSA collective agreement, you are required to report to work.
If you are told by a supervisor to go home after reporting to work, please contact the UWOSA office before you leave campus.
HOW TO SUPPORT UWOFA
Walk the Picket Line:
If you have time during your meal or rest period, or before or after work, you have the option to join the picket line, or walk with and talk to UWOFA members to better understand the issues they are facing at the bargaining table.
Do Not Perform UWOFA Work:
As per Article 5.04 in our Collective Agreement, you have the right to decline performing any administrative or technical work normally completed by Faculty. Article 5.04 states, “Employees have the right to decline to perform the normal duties of striking or locked out employees of the Employer during a legal strike by another bargaining unit of employees of the employer or during any lock out of another bargaining unit by the employer.”
As always, if you have questions or concerns, please contact any Executive Officer at firstname.lastname@example.org.