BCIT faculty and staff vote to strike

Members of the BCIT Faculty and Staff Association (FSA) have voted 78 per cent in favour of a strike.

As the largest bargaining unit in B.C.’s colleges and institutes, it represents more than 1,400 employees of BCIT, including technology and part-time studies faculty, assistant instructors, technical staff, researchers, curriculum development professionals, librarians, program advisors and counselors.

They have been without a contract since June 30, 2010.

The union is seeking a collective agreement with wage increases and improvements in working conditions to address the needs of its members and help BCIT continue to attract faculty and staff with industry experience to train students to enter the job market upon graduation.

“Better salaries and working conditions are needed to attract career-seasoned professionals from industries where wages have kept pace with inflation,” said FSA executive director and chief negotiator Paul Reniers. “Fair wages will ensure that BCIT can hire and hold on to the kinds of professionals who built this important institution.”

The strike vote was conducted Nov. 7 to 9 and saw ballots cast by 689 members.

“The results of this strike vote show that FSA members will not sit back and watch the erosion of the learning environment they have built,” said FSA president Teresa Place.

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