Today, May 1st, on International Workers Day, you are invited to the launch of the Respect JACFA campaign at 12 p.m. noon, on the lawn outside the AME entrance.
At the event, we will be:
- holding a rally to demand from the College respect for JACFA and its members,
- conducting a drumming circle, just outside the Director General and Academic Dean’s office window, to help communicate our message, and
- handing out Respect JACFA buttons that we are asking all teachers people to wear until the resolution of our outstanding demands.
Refreshments will be served.
In this campaign, we want to highlight the lack of respect shown by the College in its recent dealings with JACFA. In particular, the College:
- has opted to unilaterally impose decisions on several important files
- has refused to meaningfully respond to JACFA’s concerns, questions and demands, most recently apparent at the April 18 CRT attended by many teachers.
- has demonstrated an unwillingness to negotiate in earnest, opting to inform us of their already-made decisions, rather than to consult and compromise. For instance, they presented their first written offer on the payment of non-permanent teachers as their “final offer”.
- has cut union release, based on misinformation and false premises, which we have consequently interpreted as an attempt to weaken the union by cutting its resources.
In demanding respect from the College, we are not only seeking the satisfactory resolution of these issues, but also a longer-term commitment from the College that:
- On all future files, the College will not act unilaterally simply because it is legally empowered to do.
- They will come to table to seek our input and feedback before making decisions, rather than to inform us of the decisions that have been made.
- They will provide well-reasoned responses to our concerns and questions (and if they find themselves unable to do so, that they will change their minds!).
- They will acknowledge that teachers are the experts on questions of academics and pedagogy, and will hold the consensus of departments, programs and committees composed of teachers in the highest regard.
This being a year where we have seen a significant turnover in the College’s senior administration, coinciding with a marked shift in its approach to labour relations, the time to demand respect is now, so that we may return to the long-standing John Abbott tradition of collegial, collaborative, and respectful labour relations.
We hope you will be able to come out to show your support (especially if you are a drummer of sorts).
The JACFA Executive