(Montreal—March 8, 2022).
On the eve of McGill University’s major 24-hour fundraising drive, 150 McGill Law alumni signed a petition (attached) calling on McGill to end the legal battle it is waging against its law professors’ attempt to form a union and bargain collectively.
On November 7, 2021, a supermajority of professors from McGill’s Faculty of Law applied to the Tribunal Administratif du Travail to certify the Association of McGill Professors of Law (AMPL) to act as their members’ exclusive bargaining agent. McGill is contesting the application. McGill’s Faculty of Law is the only law faculty in Quebec without union representation and a collective agreement.
“As someone who is very connected to McGill, I am extremely disappointed by the actions taken by the McGill and Law Faculty leadership in fighting the efforts of its professors to unionize,” wrote McGill Law alum Mae J. Nam in her letter presenting the petition to McGill’s Dean of Law, Robert Leckey. Ms. Nam is a partner at the law firm Ryder Wright Blair & Holmes LLP.
“The right to join and form a union is a constitutional right entrenched under section 2(d) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms … This effort should be recognized by the McGill Faculty Administration voluntarily and short of costly litigation against McGill Law professors,” the law alumni petition reads.
“We are grateful,” said AMPL Interim President, Evan Fox-Decent, “for the support that our alumni – our former students – are giving us. McGill Law has a reputation for supporting constitutional rights, including labour rights. It is disappointing that McGill would treat its professors with such hostility.”
Having raised funds for McGill in the past and on the day before “McGill24” – a major fundraising day at McGill – Ms. Nam said that “[t]his year…rather than making a contribution to McGill, I will be making a donation to the Canadian Association of University Teachers’ Harry Crowe Foundation. I will be encouraging my fellow alumni to do the same.”
“[Law] Faculty members have made very clear their desire to achieve their workplace aspirations collectively. McGill should respect their wishes and stop all further litigation proceedings immediately,” Ms. Nam affirmed.
Dean Leckey replied to Ms. Nam by e-mail: “Thank you for your message. I am always appreciative when members of our alumni community make the effort to share their views with me.”
For more information or to arrange an interview in English, please contact: Mae J. Nam, firstname.lastname@example.org, 416-340-9070.
Pour les questions en français, veuillez contactez Maître Jesse Gutman, email@example.com, à 416- 432-1336.
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