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CFL Players Association frustrated by two-week delay in collective bargaining

The CFL Players Association is frustrated that the league leadership has decided not to meet again until the end of April for collective bargaining talks. - Postmedia News graphic

A two-week delay in bargaining toward a new collective agreement has the Canadian Football League Players Association expressing frustration and disappointment.

Brian Ramsay, executive director of the CFLPA, said the CFL leadership has unilaterally decided not to meet again until April 29.

Ramsay said “it’s disrespectful to the process” and will put undue pressure on the two sides to get an agreement done by May 18, when the current pact expires. He does however still believe an agreement is possible before that time.

“We believe as players that it is possible and we’re going to continue to work today, tomorrow and right through in a solution-based effort to try and find that deal and that has been the focus of the players.”

But they cannot negotiate with themselves. The two sides met Monday and Tuesday in Vancouver. It was their fifth such session and progress has been slow, according to Ramsay. It will now be at a standstill for two crucial weeks.

“There is frustration from the players,” said Ramsay. “We’ve said all along it’s in everyone’s benefit to get this resolved and have a solution and a deal done in a timely fashion.”

He said league personnel told the players that other priorities would leave the CFL unable to schedule meetings with the players. Ramsay would not say exactly what those priorities were, as delineated by the league.

Two CFL spokespeople did not immediately respond to a request for comment on those priorities and the delay in bargaining.

dbarnes@postmedia.com

Twitter.com/sportsdanbarnes

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