Over 200 food service workers at York University are currently on an open-ended strike. These workers prepare and serve food and beverages to tens of thousands of York community members every single day. They are striking for dignity and respect, for decent wages and good working conditions, and against anti-Black racism and Islamophobia in the workplace.
On March 5 and 11, we invite you to Experience #YorkStrike Days—to see what the real York looks like, and how it treats a workforce that is mostly racialized workers, immigrant workers, and women workers.
Your support could make a real difference in getting York to do the right thing. Join us on the picket lines and help these workers win a fair deal.
Join us for Experience #YorkStrike Day on:
Bring your family, friends and all your pressing questions about the current strike by food service workers at York University. We’ll have current students, staff and faculty on hand to show you all the ways you can help food service workers win a fair deal.
You’ll also get to see what a #YorkStrike looks like, and to be a part of an exciting solidarity action. Together, we will demonstrate to York University President Mamdouh Shoukri that our community—including future students and their families—wants justice for food service workers.
Don’t miss out, be in the know and plan to participate in the #YorkStrike experience:
- Visit fun and lively picket lines at campus entrances
- Meet food service workers and be inspired by their struggle for justice
- Chat with students, staff and faculty about York’s vibrant activist community
- Get to know campus on the scenic Solidarity Walking Tour
- Watch a live “banner drop” off the top of Kaneff Tower, Vari Hall or the Student Centre (to be confirmed)
- Sing and dance with the Solidarity Flash Mob (at random times all day)
- Enjoy FREE Solidarity Coffee at boycotted Aramark locations
- Make your own souvenir placard (materials provided)
Come explore! We can’t wait to meet you.
If you can’t make it this time, sign up for one of these upcoming tours:
- Why is Ontario’s tuition the highest in Canada? (And how could it be free?)
- No to racism, no to Islamophobia: Building the anti-racist university
- Justice for contract faculty: How precarity affects your education
- Drop fees, not bombs! The case for divestment at York
To sign up or for more info, email YorkStrike.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Send a message to York President Mamdouh Shoukri and let him know you support food service workers. Every letter counts!
Getting to York
A number of buses from across the GTA take you directly to the Keele campus. However, unionized transit workers will not cross picket lines where they are set up at campus entrances.
For updates, visit YorkStrike.ca or follow #YorkStrike on social media.
Visitors coming to the Keele Campus for Experience #YorkStrike Day will meet picket lines at the Pond Road (off Keele Street) and Sentinel Road (off Finch Avenue) entrances to campus. Please build in an extra 30 to 45 minutes to your travel time—this is the range of waiting times before cars are allowed to cross picket lines.
If you are coming northbound on Keele Street, note that northbound Keele Street is currently closed at Finch Avenue West due to construction. There is a detour around the intersection to get you back onto Keele Street and to York’s Pond Road entrance. The alternate northbound detour route is east on Toro Road, north on Tangiers Road and west on the Murray Ross Parkway extension, back onto Keele Street northbound. Finch Avenue West traffic will detour north on Tangiers Road to Murray Ross Parkway to access Keele Street. Southbound traffic is not affected.
Complimentary parking is available for Experience #YorkStrike Day guests in both the Bennett Centre for Student Services parking garage and in the Pond Road parking lot.
#YorkStrike volunteers in red jackets, as well as ample signage (placard signs, homemade posters, banners, etc.) will direct you to the Experience #YorkStrike Day welcome area in the Accolade East building and to the exciting solidarity-themed events around campus.
The York Promise?
York should be here to support you throughout your unique university journey—that includes making all jobs at York good jobs. When York’s food service workers earn poverty wages and face racist harassment in the workplace, all of us are affected. An injury to one is an injury to all!
York must strive to be a good Employer and live up to its social justice mandate. Helping these workers get a fair deal will truly enrich your student experience and ensure the physical and mental well-being of everyone in our community.
York, please promise you will:
Be transparent and accountable
Make public the details of the contract between York University and Aramark, the private corporation that manages food services on campus. How much money does York provide to cover wages and benefits? How much profit does Aramark make off the workers?
Help these workers get a fair deal
Increase the funding that York provides Aramark to manage food services on campus. Tie the funding to improved wages and benefits, not Aramark’s profits. The details could be spelled out in a Memorandum of Understanding that supplements the current contract.
Make York a ‘$15 & Fairness’ campus
All jobs at York should be good jobs. Consult with all the employee groups and student federations on campus to draft a “$15 & Fairness” procurement policy that establishes minimal fair and equitable employment standards for all contracted-out services at York University.