CUPE Application for Trade Union Certification of Postdoctoral Fellows

PDAD&C#53, 2012-13

To:  PDAD&C 
From:      Cheryl Misak, Vice-President and Provost
Angela Hildyard, Vice-President Human Resources and Equity
Date:  April 23, 2013
Re:  CUPE Application for Trade Union Certification of Postdoctoral Fellows

Last Friday, April 19, 2013, CUPE filed a new application to be certified as the exclusive bargaining agent representing a large subset of Postdoctoral Fellows. As you may recall, CUPE first attempted to certify Postdoctoral Fellows in 2009 but was unsuccessful in the vote. To be certified, the union must receive 50% plus 1 of the votes actually cast.

If the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) orders a vote, which is highly likely, it will probably take place on Friday April 26th. We therefore strongly encourage you to speak with your Principal Investigators and Postdoctoral Fellow colleagues about this important development, and encourage Postdoctoral Fellows to exercise their right to vote, should a vote be ordered. We will communicate with you further as soon as we are notified that a vote is taking place, and will let you know what date, time and locations the OLRB has set.

The University is communicating its views on this development directly with the Postdoctoral Fellows. A copy of the memo to Postdoctoral Fellows from the Provost, the Vice-President Research and the Dean of the School of Graduate Studies is attached. We urge you to read it and share it with Principal Investigators in your department. Again, it is fully appropriate for you and for the University to strongly encourage Postdoctoral Fellows to vote, whatever their views on unionization. You and your colleagues, however, should not express personal views about unionization when speaking to Postdoctoral Fellows, should not attempt to find out their intentions, and should be careful not to be perceived as trying to influence their choice.