Negotiations 1999/2000 – Conciliation Fails: MUN-MUNFA Talks Break Off

September 8, 2000

Conciliation talks aimed at negotiating a new collective agreement between the Memorial University Faculty Association (MUNFA), representing 750 faculty and librarians, and the MUN administration broke off Friday, September 8, 2000, only 90 minutes after they resumed following a two week recess.

Dr. Noel Roy, MUNFA President, said, “Yet again, even with the assistance of a provincial conciliator, the university administration was unprepared to discuss any of our monetary concerns – salaries, an early retirement package, or pension reform. The conciliator was forced to conclude that an impasse had been reached.”

The MUN administration had refused to negotiate these items during more than 10 months of regular collective bargaining. For this reason MUNFA applied for conciliation on August 4 in the hope of speeding up the process. When the two sides first met with the conciliator in late August, the university administration again refused to bargain monetary issues. At the suggestion of the conciliator, MUNFA agreed to meet again with the administration in two weeks; MUNFA insisted through the conciliator that the administration must bring a financial package to the table so that real progress could be made in conciliation.

Dr. Roy continued, “This morning, as has been their consistent practice, the MUN administration was not prepared to negotiate issues crucial to our members. Our members have been extraordinarily patient, but now after 11 months in which relatively little has been accomplished at negotiations, they are naturally displeased that no further progress is being made.”

MUNFA will be in a position to hold a legal strike vote, and to commence job action, 15 days after the conciliator files his report with the Minister of Environment and Labour. MUNFA expects the report to be filed by the middle of next week.

“While we would very much like to avoid disruption of classes this semester, a strike is distinctly possible,” concluded Dr. Roy.

-30-CONTACT: Dr. Noel Roy
President, MUNFA
Tel: (709)737-8642 or 737-8245
Fax: (709)737-3703