Monthly Archives: November 2015

MUALA votes in favour of tentative agreement

After a long and challenging period of bargaining, a tentative agreement was reached between the McMaster University Academic Librarians’ Association and the employer early the morning hours of Nov 14th 2015. In a vote that closed Nov 19th, the members of MUALA voted in favour of ratifying the agreement. Details of the agreement will be made available once the ratification process is complete.

Throughout the bargaining process, the membership remained committed, consistently showing their strong support of the bargaining team and the actions taken towards achieving an agreement. The team and the membership were bolstered by the rallying support of other unions and associations as demonstrated through meaningful letters, blog posts, emails, tweets, and calls.

Thank you. We are grateful for all that you did and honoured to be part of such a community.

MUALA Executive and Bargaining Team

McMaster unions in full support of MUALA

MUALA leadership met with other unions on campus today to discuss our ongoing efforts to secure a fair and equitable deal from the university. The outcome of the discussion was hugely positive; shortly after the meeting, CUPE 3906 released the following statement:

“The consensus amongst the unions here on campus — CUPE, Unifor, IUOE, and BUC — was that the librarians have our full support during their difficult negotiations with McMaster.”

Sincere thanks to the members of CUPE 3906, Unifor 5555, IUOE 772, and the Building Union of Canada for their solidarity and support during this trying time.

McMaster University Library Negotiations at a Breaking Point (Press Release)

After four days of conciliation, the McMaster University Academic Librarians’ Association (MUALA) has asked the Conciliator for a “No Board” report placing the Association in a legal strike position in November.

The Association is disappointed that talks are breaking down.

“We are very frustrated in the Employer’s aggressive bargaining tactics and their disregard for the crucial role our members play in the Universities’ teaching and research success. Our members very much want to be working with students and supporting faculty research rather than walking the picket line,” says MUALA President Laura Banfield.

On October 9th, 94% of the membership voted unanimously (100%) in favour of a strike mandate. With the request for a no-board, the MUALA Executive will now be in a position to call for a strike 17 days after the Ministry issues the report.

The University and the Academic Librarians began bargaining in June of this year and many significant issues related to academic rights and responsibilities, career advancement, benefits and compensation remain outstanding.

“McMaster has tabled a wage increase that is far below inflation and less than what others have received, and is trying to cut the merit pay that was agreed to in the last round. This is about equity and fairness,” says Banfield. “We remain hopeful that the Employer will return to the table with a reasonable offer so that a deal can be reached before our strike deadline”.

MUALA represents Academic Librarians who work at McMaster University’s University Library and Health Sciences Library. Academic Librarians, who are required to hold advanced academic credentials, play an integral role at research universities. Their responsibilities include: support for research and teaching; the preservation, collection and provision of scholarly materials; and, involvement in independent scholarly activity.

Contact: Laura Banfield, MUALA President,
For more information visit the MUALA Website:

Press Release – McMaster Librarians – Nov 3 2015