HUMOUR: TSSU furthers job action by locking students in tutorial rooms until demands have been met


Starting last Monday, in a surprising move by the Teaching Support Staff Union (TSSU), teaching assistants began locking students inside of tutorial rooms in a way to further negotiations with the SFU Board of Governors.

The TSSU has been on strike since the start of summer semester, with many TAs withholding grades until an agreement is reached with the university. While students can apply to receive their grades under special circumstances, many have been left unable to graduate or apply for financial awards without their grades.

An apparent stalemate between the university and the TSSU is being viewed as the main reason behind the recent heightened, somewhat extreme job action.

“The students need to know we care about them, and that if they refuse our care they’ll need to be dealt with harshly,” stated TSSU head member Mike Shunt. “In order for our students to understand the unfairness we’re dealing with from the Board, we plan on locking all our students in their tutorials.”

All tutorials in session during the announcement were immediately locked in by their respective TAs, with students reportedly assuming it was all an elaborate prank; any such illusion has since worn off, after an undetermined number of students spent a whole night inside.

“I don’t even want my grades at this point,” a student pleaded behind closed doors after the first night. “We’re running out of food and water.”

The TSSU promised regular rations of bread, cheese, and water, however the rations seemed small in quantity.

During a press conference at the end of last week, SFU president Andrew Petter said he was shocked by the questionable bargaining tactics and was stymied at what to do. According to Petter, his first thoughts were to call on the Burnaby police forces, but opted not to: “They’ll label me a union-buster and I’ll look like a wage-stealing dick. My Admiral Ackbar senses tell me it’s a trap.”

With even the school’s governors refusing to act, the situation has only worsened for students trapped in their tutorial rooms. Reports from grainy cellphone footage show Lord of the Flies-style scenarios in which students are viciously fighting each other for food and water. Feces and blood smears windows with messages reading “First our grades, now this!?,” “How is this helping me?,” and “I don’t even know what TSSU stands for, leave me out of this!”

TSSU rep Hughe DuSchnozzle ignored the pleas, stating, “These complaints show the students still don’t understand how much our job actions are for their benefit. Sometimes you have to be cruel to be kind, I suppose.”

Remnants of the Simon Fraser Red Cross Club who weren’t trapped are preparing an aid-smuggling program into the tutorial rooms. This aid, while appreciated, still does not solve the lock-in which, much like the current strike, seems like an unending struggle.