on behalf of Michael Di Grappa, Vice-Principal (Administration and Finance)
The McGill University Non-academic Certified Association (MUNACA) began a general strike at 6 a.m. this morning. MUNACA represents many of the clerical workers, as well as lab technicians and other support staff who work at McGill. It is unfortunate that we have been unable to agree on terms for a new contract.
McGill will continue to fulfill its teaching and research responsibilities and mission. Despite the strike and the presence of picket lines around the University’s campuses, the University remains open and classes are proceeding as scheduled.
You have the right, as a student or an employee, to cross the picket line to get to class or to your work. McGill will ensure that you can enter the campus safely. If you find yourself in a situation where you feel threatened or unsafe, please call Security at 514-398-3000, and on the Macdonald Campus at 514-398-7777 and someone will escort you across the line.
Expectations that students attend classes and complete assignments on time remain unchanged, as does the expectation that employees will continue to fulfill their responsibilities.
Employees who continue to come to work will continue to be paid. You may choose not to cross a picket line out of sympathy with the striking workers, but it is important to remember that you will not be paid for the time you are not at work.
While we remain hopeful that a fair and reasonable settlement will be achieved in the near term, we have made preparations to continue the operation of the University with the least disruption possible. Provincial labour law allows certain categories of our managers to perform the work done by MUNACA members. Nonetheless, the provision of some services or hours of service have been reduced in many areas of the University.
We will keep you up to date on a regular basis; at a minimum there will be a weekly update of information related to the provision of services and the progress at the negotiation table. Every Thursday, this will be sent via email and posted to McGill’s home page (under Announcements) and the Human Resources website (http://www.mcgill.ca/hr). In addition, if there is new information to share in between these messages, we will issue additional updates.
- A list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) has been posted on the Human Resources website at www.mcgill.ca/hr/labour-relations-news. If you have questions that aren’t answered there, you may email your question to info.hr [at] mcgill.ca and your question will be answered as quickly as possible.
- A website containing a list of the revised hours of service for various points in the University, including the Service Point for students, will be up shortly. Once that website is active, you will be notified by email, through MyMcGill and through an Announcement on McGill’s home page.
- Please note, however, that our two largest libraries, the Humanities and Social Services Library and the Schulich Science and Engineering Library, will remain open for study purposes, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Strikes are never easy or comfortable. In the McGill tradition we ask that everyone remain respectful and patient. We have a superb university and an outstanding community of students and employees. We will get through this and come out with a settlement.
We are proud of all of our employees and the important work they do in fulfilling our academic and research mission.