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October 28, 2017 5:26 am

“Solidarity Forever”

Saturday, March 7, 2015 @ 2:20 PM
A large crowd turned out to today's UNBCFA rally - photo 250News

A large crowd turned out for today’s UNBCFA rally – photo 250News

Prince George, B.C. – Hundreds of people turned out for a rally today in support of UNBC’s striking Faculty Association at the Prince George Courthouse.

It included speeches and words of support from unions and teachers from across the country including Canadian Association of University Teachers vice-president James Compton.

“People are really paying attention to what’s happening in Prince George. They’ve seen other administrations try to impose an austerity agenda that really harms the core mission of teaching and research and they don’t want that to happen here either.”

UNBC professor Matt Reid with son Dean and daughter Victoria - photo 250News

UNBC professor Matt Reid with son Dean and daughter Victoria – photo 250News

UNBCFA president Jacqueline Holler, who joined English professor Kevin Hutchings in a stirring rendition of Pete Seeger’s union pleaser “Solidarity Forever,” said the support locally and from across the country has been greatly appreciated.

“It’s been tremendously meaningful and we’re tremendously grateful to all these people.”

Despite the support, she admits talks have broken off, with no deal currently in sight.

“We want a fair deal. We’re really looking for an individual adjustment, a labour market adjustment which some of the faculty here today would actually receive no increase in their compensation.”

(When it comes to wages, UNBC has offered a 5.5% increase over five years).

Is Holler concerned the strike could wipe out the semester?

“No faculty strike in Canada has ever wiped out a semester but I do know that students are concerned about that and frankly given what we’re seeing from UNBC administration, I’m afraid we’ll be at this next week.”

Physics  professor Matt Reid received his undergraduate degree from UNBC, noting the high level of instruction helped him to secure scholarships throughout his schooling.

He says it also helped improve the school’s reputation, though he expressed concern moving forward, without a fair wage increase.

“I want this university to be able to launch careers indefinitely. I want people who graduate from here to have the degrees mean something. And I want it to always be ranked number two in the country, or even number one. So we need to retain the talent we have and attract new talent.”



What a mess this is! I hope that this is a learning experience for UNBC’s senior administrators, but likely not. This strike appears to be a result of 20 years of financial disrespect that they have shown to UNBC’s faculty and staff members. It may be time to clean house in the executive suite and then re-think how UNBC conducts its business.

if faculty are not prepared to wipe out the semester they may as well fold now. the student hostages are their only clout whether they know it or not and unless they throw them under the bus the govt will kick ass like the schools and colleges, which were not prepared to do what it took to win. I mean who goes on strike when the schools are closed and still expect to be treated seriously by the gov, that was just dumb. i’m betting the unbc faculty are just as naive….

I understand there is a challenge going out to all students and parents to email or twitter Macleans Magazine about the strike and to give their take on it.

“Psychics professor Matt Reid received his undergraduate degree from UNBC”

I didn’t realize there was a degree in Psychics at UNBC – do you mean physics, perhaps?

    Thanks! Who needs spell check when I’ve got you? Greg.

Well time to empty the “sit and spins” in the admin office and the board of directors for the university. Pitch them out, they serve little or no purpose, they sure as hell don’t teach anything other than how to go about squandering university funds for glad hand trips and to pad personal air-miles accounts. The actual “working staff” can get the wages they deserve for the work they do. But when you have a board filled with useless folks who rack in big cheques, and serve little or no real purpose other than to warm a chair, that’s just wrong.

I didn’t see many SD57 teachers out in support…

PG101 did you take a survey of who was walking the line.. did they all have badges to say where they worked ? I saw well over a hundred walking yesterday.. but didnt take roll call.

shadowy hit the nail this mess is well overdue! Administration should of placed some funds aside knowing that this demand was coming! Why the big change over with the food cafeteria, why new sprinkler systems, why new phone system? Why spend spend spend

PG101… there were many SD57 public school teachers out in support as were many other union members supporting the UNBCFA

Really 20142015? Sprinkler systems (fire suppression systems) are required by law. They are also required to be tested quarterly and a full annual verification of all systems including pull stations and alarm bells. Not something they can skip spending money on if they want to be open.

One of the protester board had outdoor sprinkler system

20142015 lol.. and yes outdoor sprinkler systems are considered part of the fire protection.. hehehe thats funny… i have underground sprinkler system and dont get a cut rate for my house insurance.

The sprinkler system was for the grass outside, nothing to do with Fire Protection required by law. I was actually going to report them to bylaw enforcement as often the system is running on the days they are not allowed to water. ( odd days only, the address is 3333 University Way )

The odd/even bylaw restriction for lawn sprinkling is for residential only I believe, there is only a time of day restriction for businesses as they pay for actual water consumption and not a flat rate. Most lawn sprinkling systems are part of the landscaping improvements required by the city when you perform commercial construction I do believe (we had to so I assume it applies to everyone). You have to have “x” amount of landscaping value for “y” amount of building construction or renovation performed, it is a capital cost along with the construction. Can’t say this was the reason for it if landscape sprinklers were installed in this instance, would have to look at the books.

Can’t really get too excited about these top 10%ers going on strike!

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