Strike Information for Employees

CBU does not want our valued faculty to go on strike. A strike would be devastating to our students and our community. However, CBU respects CBUFA’s right to choose to strike and CBU is in the process of preparing in the event there is a strike. The below FAQs are meant to help students prepare in the event a strike is called.

If you have a question you would like to submit to be added to the FAQ, please email labour@cbu.ca.

General Strike FAQs

A strike is a stoppage of work, a refusal to work or to continue work, by employees in a specific union. A strike may take different forms, but generally, it is a refusal to work in a way that is designed to slow down, disrupt or stop operations. A strike is organized by a union, in this case CBUFA, as a form of protest in an attempt to force the employer (CBU) to agree to their demands.

The University’s latest proposal, for a three-year term, ensures the salaries of CBUFA members among the highest in the Nova Scotia university sector. The updated proposal includes:

  • A total general increase of 8% over the next three years (3%, 2.5%, and 2.5% per year) in addition to existing annual step increases; and
  • Adding additional steps as permanent increases to the following salary scales to ensure similarity with other primarily undergraduate institutions in Nova Scotia: Lab Instructor (6.4% increase), Senior Lab Instructor (5.5% increase) and Librarian II (2.6% increase).

Full details of this financial proposal are attached and at this link.

To provide context for recent settlements in the post-secondary sector, please see other Atlantic Canadian recent settlements:

  • Acadia University – four-year term, 2% per year, divided into 1% each six months plus a wage reopener in the fourth year.
  • Dalhousie University – Three-year term, 3%, 2.5%, and 2.5% increases per year with adjustments to ranks.
  • St. Thomas University- three-year term, 2%, 1.95% and 1.95% increases per year.
  • Université Ste-Anne – three-year term, 3%, 3%, and 2% increases per year.
  • University of New Brunswick – three-year term, 2.5%, 2.5% and 2.5% per year with a $1,000 signing bonus.
  • NSCAD – four-year term, 2%, 2%, 3%, and 2% increases per year.

CBU believes in offering competitive compensation. CBU faculty are fairly compensated in relation to other undergraduate institutions in Nova Scotia, as demonstrated by a comparison of 2022 CBU faculty salary scales.

The University’s latest proposal, for a three-year term, ensures the salaries of CBUFA members among the highest in the Nova Scotia university sector. The updated proposal includes:

  • A total general increase of 8% over the next three years (3%, 2.5%, and 2.5% per year) in addition to existing annual step increases; and
  • Adding additional steps as permanent increases to the following salary scales to ensure similarity with other primarily undergraduate institutions in Nova Scotia: Lab Instructor (6.4% increase), Senior Lab Instructor (5.5% increase) and Librarian II (2.6% increase).

CBUFA’s counterproposal on salaries included a total increase of 14% over the next two years (7% per year).

To view the full-sized PDF version, click here. 

At a picket line, union members will generally carry signs that show their concerns or issues, and may walk in front of campus entrances. Picket lines are not legally permitted to set up on private property. In the case of CBU, all property from the fence line along Grand Lake Road toward campus buildings is private property.

As a CBU employee, you have a legal right to cross a CBUFA picket line to enter campus, and you are expected to continue your work as a non-union or non-CBUFA member. Any picketing is expected to occur in a lawful, respectful and considerate manner.

Crossing a picket line should be done respectfully. While this may be uncomfortable for some employees, we encourage you to act as you normally would toward those striking. It is legal for those on strike to provide information and we respect their right to do so, but they must allow the normal movement of people and vehicles onto the CBU campus and CBU affiliated locations. We expect both parties will act respectfully toward one another. There will be an end to every strike and all CBU employees must work together to continue to provide a positive student experience to our valued students.

While unexpected, if you encounter a situation where you feel that you were not treated in a respectful manner by those on the picket line, please report any incidents to your immediate supervisor.

Although crossing a picket line may be uncomfortable for some employees, we encourage you to act as you normally would toward those striking. It is legal for those on strike to provide information, and we respect their right to do so, but they must allow the normal movement of people and vehicles to and from the CBU campus and CBU affiliated locations. 

All non-CBUFA employees are expected to come to work as usual.

Unfortunately, we have no way to know how long CBUFA will choose to strike. We remain hopeful that an agreement will be reached. 

If you work with CBUFA members, those pieces of your job may pause. Otherwise, work will continue as normal (hours of operation, in-person attendance on campus as applicable), including student services. It is important to remember that students will still need access to campus, to services, and to employees. In fact, it may be that more students decide to come to the campus as Cineplex-based courses will be suspended for the duration of the strike.

Yes. CBU has no intention of restricting access to official CBU email as long as it is used in a respectful manner. Important University updates will continue to be distributed via direct email, and it is important that all members of the CBU community receive those updates.

CBU has no intention of restricting access to Moodle or other educational platforms as long as they are used respectfully and appropriately.

It is possible that the provincial government will get involved if the parties still cannot come to an agreement and a strike has gone on for a length of time. The next step would be mediation which is a non-binding tool used to help parties reach a settlement.

If a mediator is still not successful, the provincial government may appoint an arbitrator. The arbitration process sees the arbitrator listen to  both parties and then they enforce a binding settlement. The final settlement may or may not be one that the parties are happy with; however, it must be respected.

No. The University will not financially gain from this strike. Any salaries not paid to CBUFA members during the strike will be redirected into a form of appropriate compensation for students for the disruption to their studies.

Yes, CBU will continue to host events and other recreation activities for students and community members.  To view upcoming events, please visit cbu.ca/events

A grievance is essentially an employee or union association complaint based on experiencing a real or perceived injustice in the workplace. A common strategy in the lead up to union negotiations is to increase the number of grievances filed to identify where the key issues are. CBU is committed to resolving any and all outstanding issues using the tools in the collective agreement.

The Labour Relations page will continue to be updated with any new developments and will be your main source for accurate and up-to-date information. Important updates affecting students and employees will also be communicated directly through official CBU email. Please pay close attention to your CBU email for all future communications from the University on this matter.

Sessionals (ICAs) FAQs

All active courses are listed here. If your course is listed, then it will go ahead, and you can teach it. Please check the list. If your course is not listed, it is paused during the strike.

Unfortunately, this means your course/class is on pause during the strike. With a withdrawal of CBUFA services, no CBUFA courses will go ahead.

Yes, you will have access to Moodle and your official CBU email. Important updates will be distributed via email and all employees should have access to that.

Yes, CBU will continue to pay sessional instructors, even if their course(s) is/are paused during the strike.

If you are doing 12 credits that would mean you are not a sessional employee and in fact are on a limited-term appointment. This would be covered under the CBUFA collective agreement and thus you would be a CBUFA member and would be considered on strike. As it pertains to your role with the CBUFA strike you will need to reach out to your union representation for greater clarity.