‘No formal dates scheduled’ to begin CBA negotiations between league and players: report

There are 70 days remaining until the expiration of the CFL’s current collective bargaining agreement with the Players’ Association, but the two sides have yet to arrange a meeting to hash out their issues.

According to a report from Postmedia’s Danny Austin: “I’m told there are still no formal dates scheduled for the CFL and CFLPA to begin collective bargaining agreement negotiations. The CFL does expect negotiations to begin ‘shortly’. Certainly this month, I would expect.”

The existing collective agreement between the CFL and CFLPA was ratified prior to the 2019 season and it was amended prior to the 2021 season to help facilitate a safe return amid the pandemic. The current agreement expires on May 14, the day before training camps are scheduled to open across the league.

The collective bargaining process begins with a notice to bargain, which is a written notification given by either the employer or the union requiring the other party to commence bargaining for the purpose of renewing or revising a collective agreement or entering into a new collective agreement.

The CFLPA filed that written notice to begin official negotiations on February 23, but the two sides have yet to meet in any official capacity.

The Players’ Association has been busy with its Annual General Meeting in Las Vegas, electing two new members to their board of directors on Thursday. One of those new union leaders, Bombers’ linebacker Adam Bighill, told the Winnipeg Sun that he did not expect negotiations with the league to be “overly combative” due to the two sides establishing greater trust throughout the pandemic, but that players would be ready for a work stoppage if required.