After nearly nine months of sometimes gruelling negotiations, Thompson Rivers University faculty may finally have reached a deal.
The unionized teaching staff has been without a contract since April 2012.
This week, TRU’s faculty association and employers reached a tentative, two-year agreement, which would expire in April 2014.
On Friday afternoon, the TRUFA bargaining team put the deal to its executive with a recommendation to proceed with a ratification vote.
The executive accepted, said John Turner, TRUFA chief bargainer.
“It’s been a fairly long round,” said Turner. “There’s been some points of tension and opposition but overall, it was a very professional and respectful round — truthfully.
“(The employer) worked very hard to reach an agreement in a provincially constrained environment.”
TRUFA intends to bring the contract details to its membership next week for a vote.
Turner declined to provide details except to say it contains some “good gains.”
“It’s not everything we’d hoped for but it never is,” he said. “I think that (faculty) will be happy, they’ll be satisfied with what we’ve done.”
With the contract’s expiry only a few months away, the team has to start thinking about the next round of bargaining soon, said Turner. But he felt positive about future negotiations.
“I think we left off on a good note with the employer. There are intelligent and reasonable people on both sides of the table,” he said. “We’re going to have to regroup here and think about strategy moving forward.”