The Canadian Football Players’ Association has voted to strike, if needed.

Via the email sent to all players:

The results of Wednesday’s poll are in and we have heard you loud and clear.

Thank you for voting and thank you for your support.

97.3% of players voted ‘yes’ on Wednesday. That means that health, safety, rehabilitation and recognition by the CFL of your overall contributions – through a true partnership – remain paramount.

We are focused on working as hard as we can to get an agreement done. That commitment has not changed. The results of this vote empowers our bargaining committee and player representatives to use this mandate in our on-going pursuit of a fair collective agreement.

We would like to share some other important facts:

Almost every CFL player participated in our strike vote.

One of the goals of this vote was to satisfy various provincial labour codes as we continue these collective negotiations. This helps position our bargaining team well for a variety of possible scenarios.

The CFL has returned to bargaining, following their unilateral decision to delay talks, and we will continue negotiations on April 29 and 30 in Toronto.

Today, it is clearer than ever that we are unified as an Association because you deserve respect for the sacrifices you make for the game and for the CFL.

The CFL made a unilateral decision to delay negotiations until April 29. B.C. Lions linebacker Solomon Elimimian said the union was prepared for any situation during the bargaining process.

The CFLPA’s bargaining committee followed by instructing players not to arrange travel to the league’s member clubs for training camp. The group has also informed players that the association does not intend to work past May 18th unless a new deal can first be agreed upon.

Players reported to training camp in May of 2014 without a CBA in place, hurting the CFLPA’s leverage in negotiations. The players’ association does not want to make the same mistake twice.

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Justin Dunk is the pre-eminent CFL insider and unabashed supporter of Canadian quarterbacks. He is one of the founders of the new 3DownNation.