February 14th, 2020
Statement on Proposed Tuition Increase
Executive, PSAC Local 40004
We are deeply concerned by the proposed tuition fee increase put forward by the interim Dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Post-Doctoral Fellows. The report proposes a ten percent increase per year for five years for domestic students with a 6.9 percent differential increase for international graduate students. These increases will put a significant burden on already financially-stressed graduate students.
As a union, our concern is the well-being of our members. These proposed tuition fee increases will place members in undue hardship, negatively effecting the financial stability, food security and mental health of graduate students. The scholarships and bursaries the university is offering does not do enough to help students as the struggle to keep up with increases roughly five times the rate of inflation, five years in a row. There are no proposed needs based grants.
Graduate students teach classes, assist with laboratories/tutorials, provide research assistance, and many other forms of work at the University of Saskatchewan. They contribute to the prestige of the institution through this work and their scholarship. Nevertheless, many graduate students struggle to provide for their basic needs. The proposed increase will only make this situation worse.
Our union is currently in bargaining to renew our collective agreement. We will be taking this proposed tuition increase into consideration during this process. We will continue to monitor this situation closely and are in communication with the GSA on planning a route forward. We strongly urge the University of Saskatchewan to reassess their intention to increase tuition.
If you want to get involved in the fight back effort, get in touch with Jesse Todd, Regional Representative, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Local 40004 Executive