While the Mount Allison Faculty Association has received support from a number of students throughout the two-and-a-half weeks they've been on strike, not all students are behind them. Above, fouth-year student Greg McLaughlin adds his voice to the mix during a MAFA solidarity rally Friday afternoon in downtown Sackviile, carrying a sign calling for an end to the strike and letting both parties know students' educations should not be used as bargaining chips in a labour dispute. TOWER PHOTO
SACKVILLE, N.B. ‚Äď As week two of the Mount Allison University strike drew to a close last week, faculty out on the picket lines continued to gain plenty of support from their peers across the country, as evidenced by another solidarity rally on Friday afternoon.
Once again led by drummers and chanting slogans and singing, fellow academic staff from more than a dozen Canadian universities marched around the university campus, ending at the bandstand in downtown Sackville. Some students also attended the event in support of their professors.
‚ÄúWe‚Äôve seen an enormous amount of support coming our way,‚ÄĚ said professor Michael Fox, a member of the Mount Allison Faculty Association (MAFA), during the rally. ‚ÄúAnd we want to say thanks to all of you for the unbelievable outpouring of support, which helps keep morale high.
The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) Defence Fund has over 20,000 members from 50 unions and sends ‚Äúflying pickets‚ÄĚ when a member union is on strike.
And just as they did last week, the picketers once again brought with them messages of support as well as financial donations for Mount Allison Faculty Association‚Äôs cause. Messsages included: ‚ÄúWe feel your strength and determination to win this for the principles that are important.‚ÄĚ; ‚ÄúYou have to do this to make sure you‚Äôre treated fairly, so everyone is treated fairly.‚ÄĚ; ‚ÄúWe were here last week, we‚Äôre here this week, and we‚Äôll be here as long as it takes. If you stand strong, in the end, you will have victory.‚ÄĚ
MAFA president Loralea Michaelis thanked the students, in particular, for their support and patience during the strike and promised them faculty would return to the classroom ‚Äúas soon as we can.‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúIt‚Äôs regrettable it hasn‚Äôt been solved yet,‚ÄĚ she said. ‚ÄúWe‚Äôre doing the best we can.‚ÄĚ