Students attending Algonquin College in Pembroke or Ottawa could be in for some extra time off. There might be a walkout by faculty at Ontario’s 24 community colleges as early as next Monday. The final offer put on the table by the colleges’ bargaining team has been rejected by the Ontario Public Service Employees Union. Pat Kennedy, president of OPSEU Local 415, which represents workers at Algonquin, says the council representing the colleges wouldn’t listen to proposed changes that wouldn’t have cost a cent.
Kennedy adds that provincial government has the power to send college staff back to work, and to take pre-emptive measures to avoid a strike. The chair of the colleges bargaining team says the union should allow faculty to decide by putting the offer to a vote.
The deal includes a 7.7 per cent wage increase over four years, with a new full-time faculty maximum of more than 115 thousand dollars by October of 2020.
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