Recent and upcoming meetings
The ULFA and Board negotiating teams met on January 28, 2021 for a final preliminary session to discuss process. The two sides agreed to begin with articles that were thought to be either “easy” (i.e. where agreement seems close or likely) or easily isolatable (i.e. not dependent on changes elsewhere).
At the meeting ULFA agreed to open negotiations at our next two sessions (scheduled now for February 8 and 15) by presenting proposals for Article “YY,” Schedule E, Article 20, Article “ZZ,” and Article 28.
Article “YY” concerns Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. ULFA’s proposal is for a new article based on the current Schedule R. This would confirm the existence and purpose of the Joint Equity Committee and establish procedures for a variety of processes involved in ensuring an interest-based approach to investigating and resolving equity matters.
Schedule E describes the form Faculty Members use to submit their PAR reports. ULFA’s proposal is to make the form more broadly suitable to all employee categories and ensure that the form agrees with the criteria used in the PAR process in each case.
ULFA’s proposal for Article 20/ZZ is intended to make the Collective Agreement easier to navigate. Article 20 currently contains information on promotion for members of the professoriate and the processes by which STP hearings (specifically for promotion of members of the professoriate) are carried out. All other STP processes (for members in other job categories and for other types of decisions) refer to the Article 20 process, but fail to indicate what adjustments, if any need to be made. ULFA’s proposal is to remove the information on process from 20 to a new Article ZZ (i.e. to be assigned a number), which will then be generalized to cover all STP processes. This is part of a large reorganization of the Collective Agreement that has been under discussion between the Board and ULFA for several years. The two sides agreed to begin negotiations with such a reorganization during the last round of negotiations (Schedule S).
Finally, Article 28 contains the Collective Agreement’s provisions on Intellectual Property. At the end of negotiations for the last Collective Agreement, the two sides agreed to reconsider an ULFA proposal for revisions at the beginning of this round (Schedule S).
For their part, the Board said they would present proposals for the amendment of Article 3, criteria for performance evaluation and associated review processes, and the Teaching Professoriate.
A new blog
ULFA has been using this bargaining blog for several years as one of the major tools by which we keep our membership (who ultimately must vote to ratify any agreement) informed about progress at the table. At our most recent meeting, the Board side indicated that they intended to create their own blog in order to keep third parties informed about the progress of bargaining (unlike ULFA, whose positions come from and ultimately must be ratified by its broad membership, the Board is internally responsible for both the mandate its team presents during negotiations and the ratification of any ultimate settlement). The Board’s blog was launched on February 1 through an announcement in a newsletter that is distributed to all employees. You can follow the Board’s posts at https://www.uleth.ca/hr/collective-bargaining-updates.