IGNITE Student Life hosted a post-strike information panel on Friday afternoon in the Student Centre where students could ask questions to several top administrators of the University of Guelph-Humber and Humber College.
Pre-determined questions on tuition refunds, academics and finances dominated the first 40 minutes, with time allotted to questions from students at the Atrium and from students tuning in via Facebook Live.
IGNITE President Maya Jocson acted as host for the panel, with media support running Facebook Live.
The strike launched on Oct 16 after the College Employer Council and the Ontario Public Sector Employees Union could not reach an agreement by deadline, and lasted until back-to-work legislation was passed over a month later on Nov 19.
Guelph-Humber university courses resumed via online learning on Oct 30 and on-campus by Monday with college courses starting on Tuesday.
The university shut down courses on campus due to not being able offer all classes in a program due to having many Humber College faculty, and being behind a picket line.
Student Support Fund
The application for the Student Support Fund will be available online via the updates webpage and in person at GH108 as of Friday afternoon, or at the latest, Monday morning, according to Guelph-Humber Registrar Grant Kerr.
Humber College Registrar Barbara Riach said Humber students would be able to apply online via MyHumber as of Friday afternoon.
Both require documentation to proof of strike-induced costs. After Dec 5, the reimbursement will take three to four weeks to reach students via cheque.
Improving the process
After a question poised by the Post regarding improving the way Guelph-Humber handled the college strike, Assistant Vice Provost George Bragues made clear GH needs staff from both the University of Guelph and Humber College.
However, he said that Guelph-Humber is currently revisiting its “joint-venture agreement” with Humber College.
“Each of these contingents are represented by different collective bargaining units, and so we are vulnerable, therefore, to a labour disruption that affects one of these units, said Mr Bragues.
Guelph finished faculty union bargaining on the last day of a deadline in October, but if the deadline wasn’t reached, Guelph-Humber would’ve been hit by that strike as well.
An agreement signed between Guelph and Humber when Guelph-Humber was founded over a decade previous, “defines the terms by which [it] operated”, according to Bragues.
” I can’t say whether…the way staffing is done will be revisited during this process,” he said.
Student focus groups are being held next week on the joint-venture agreement, with several students telling the Post they will bring up Humber staffing.
Reich made clear that funds borrowed from the Ontario Student Assistance Program, or OSAP, would be returned to OSAP.
More details to follow. Image 1 of the post-strike panel from The Guelph-Humber Post.