In the university's latest labour brouhaha, 70 to 80 part-time workers at the U of T Bookstore, mostly U of T students, are entering their third week of a strike.
"It seems to be a point of pride with U of T, which is one of the richest, to keep their workers at the bottom," says national CUPE rep Mary McCarthy.
The bookstore workers make $7.25 an hour and are seeking parity with their couterparts at York and Ryerson, who make between $8.50 and $11 an hour.
U of T Press, which runs U of T's publishing wing and the store, says York's and Ryerson's stores are subsidized, but the U of T Bookstore isn't.
"I think they would like to believe we are part of the university and that the university will put up some money if they make enough noise," says U of T Press VP Kathryn Bennett, "but wanting it to be so and having it so are two different things."
"They just did that so they could drive our wages down," scoffs striker Brad Richards as he and a small contingent of marchers shuffle along outside the store.
Actually, yes. Bennett says incorporating was done so the store could be more competitive with stores like Chapters.
U of T Bookstore fights for slim pay packets