The meeting was called to order by the Dr. William Schipper (MUNFA President). SWGC participated by teleconference.
- Approval of Agenda
(G03:001) MOVED (J. Church/C. Dennis) that the agenda be approved.
- President's Report
Dr. Schipper noted that this is his last general meeting as president. Tony Chadwick takes over as President on September 1, 2003. New members at large on the 2003-04 Executive are Elizabeth Browne (QEII Library) and Ross Klein (Social Work). Dr. Schipper expressed thanks to outgoing Executive members Clar Matchim (Business), Marge Hackett (Nursing) and Peter Cornish (Counseling).
- Sessionals: MUNFA continues to maintain contact with sessional and part-time instructors. A distribution list for this group was started last autumn to keep them informed. Information bulletins and information on contract negotiations have been distributed to them on the list serve.
- Association grievances: MUNFA continues to carry a number of association grievances. Among these are:
A-01-01 (course evaluations): The arbitration hearing was held in September 2002 and we await a ruling on whether mandatory course evaluations can be required by Senate, and whether the results can be published.
A-02-04 (Bargaining Unit membership): The arbitration hearing was held in February 2003. MUNFA asked for a clarification of who can be considered a member of the bargaining unit. Specifically it concerns people who have ben seconded to teach at MUN and are doing the work of ASMs.
A-02-05 (Research Pool Accounts): This grievance arose from a complaint in the Faculty of Arts that a department head had ruled that anyone doing overload teaching was required to have the money deposited in a research pool account, instead of having a choice of remuneration methods as per the Collective Agreement. This grievance has not yet been heard at arbitration.
A-02-08 (Notice on repairs): Last August the university hired a company to make repairs to the roof of the Science Building. The Association contended that the administration had not given proper notice before beginning the work. The grievance has been sent to arbitration.
A-02-09 (Travel funds disbursement): This grievance, involving reimbursement of left-over money from travel allocation funds in various faculties and schools, is close to being resolved.
- Pensions: This is an issue that remains under negotiations. We have commissioned a supplementary report from Morneau Sobeco. We asked them to develop some examples that would make clear the relative merits of a pension plan for MUNFA members only, jointly trusteed with the university, and separate from a pension plan for other MUN employees. We asked some additional questions that had not been answered in the previous report done in 2001.
- A number of members have expressed concerns to the Association about faculty complements. Although the problem surfaced particularly in the Faculty of Arts, this issue has been a growing concern for us. Fewer and Fewer retiring faculty members are being replaced by new appointees, and the Faculties of Arts and Science are finding it increasingly difficult to maintain current programs. The Association is keeping an eye on this issue, we have raised it in negotiations and continue to make representations to various senior administrators.
- Newfoundland & Labrador Federation of Labour (NLFL): On behalf of the Association the President attended the Federation's convention on November 4-6, 2002. Among the resolutions passed were several that affirmed the Federations's commitment to post-secondary education in the form of representation to government to eliminate tuition fees.
- Treasurer's Report
- The Interim Financial Statement for 2002-03 and the Proposed Fees and Budget for 2003-04 were distributed.
(G03:002) MOVED (A. Redlack/J. Church)
THAT as of July 1, 2003, MUNFA members in the bargaining unit shall pay membership fees by payroll deduction at a rate of 10.0 mills (1%) of annual salary before any voluntary salary reductions for the purposes of using part of salary as a research grant. This shall include a $2 MUNFA Strike Fund Levy contribution to the MUNFA Strike Fund.
THAT as of July 1, 2003, MUNFA members who are excluded from the bargaining unit because of their status as clinical faculty or as administrators, shall pay membership fees at the mill rate based on the median salary for their rank among all other members of the bargaining unit, minus CAUT Defence Fund dues.
THAT as of July 1, 2003, MUNFA members who are Laboratory Instructors shall pay a membership fee of $130.00 per year.
THAT as of July 1, 2003, MUNFA members who are excluded from the bargaining unit because of their status as part-time or sessional instructors, shall pay membership fees at the mill rate of 10.0 mills (1%), minus CAUT Defence Fund dues.
- CAUT Defence Fund
Angela Lonardo (CAUT Defence Fund Trustee) reported. The CAUT Defence Fund provides member associations representing unionized, Canadian academic staff with a unified strike fund. The fund pools the resources of its member associations (approximately 33 associations) and in the event of a strike, provides strike pay to academic staff, and also provides loans to the association to cover strike costs. The fund represents approximately 14,000 academic staff members across Canada.
As of August 31, 2002 the strike fund was at approximately $13,000,000.
The Annual Meeting was held in St. John's in October 2002. As is the custom for the local associations, MUNFA held a reception for the Defence Fund members.
In January 2003 the Fund welcomed two member associations: l'Universite de Moncton a Shippagan and l'Universite de Moncton, Edmundston.
- Report from MUNFA Negotiating Committee
Dr. Jon Church, Chief Negotiator, reported on behalf of the MUNFA Negotiating Committee that the parties commenced negotiations in early October 2002 and have met upwards of 25 times. Nearly 30 different proposals have been exchanged on the six articles under negotiations.
Of the six articles being negotiated, agreement has been reached on one, Article 29–Employment Equity. The new Article 29 contains a few changes and clarifications in procedure, but represents a very limited change from the current Collective Agreement.
With respect to Article 30–Cooperative Education Coordinators, an interest arbitration, as provided for the current Collective Agreement (Article 30), we held before Arbitrator Martin Teplitsky on March 21, 2003. At that time, MUNFA received a very favorable ruling from the arbitrator with respect to the introduction of language in to the current agreement governing the terms and conditions of employment for the newest members of the MUNFA bargaining unit, the CECs.
Regarding the remaining four articles, MUNFA and the administration still have significant issues to overcome before a deal can be reached. Dr. Church summarized:
- Article 3, Duties and Responsibilities of Faculty Members: Two major issues are outstanding. The administration has failed to accept the inequity of a teaching norm of six courses in some units, including SWGC and the Faculty of Education, and have not agreed to lower the maximum teaching assignment norm to five. In addition, course equivalency language is still outstanding. While MUNFA has succeeded in negotiating a mechanism to reexamine course equivalencies in units that so wish, the status of course equivalencies established since 1995, and thus language governing them, remains to be resolved.
- Article 22, Leaves: The parties have agreed to a Maternity, Adoption, Spousal and Parental Leave rather than "Special Assignment of Duties in Relation to Parental Responsibilities." However, the minimal length of time the administration is willing to top up employment insurance benefits available to new parents is a major impediment to the parties agreement.
- Article 23, Term Appointments, Joint and Cross Appointments: The administration has made only a minor attempt at negotiations to make changes in the Collective Agreement to address faculty renewal. MUNFA is attempting to limit the amount of teaching that can be carried out at MUN by non-ASM, per-course appointees. This issue remains a major outstanding issue between the parties.
- Article 31, Salaries and Benefits: MUNFA presented the administration with its Article 31 in October 2002. The administration responded in February 2003. Dr. Church reviewed MUNFA's proposal: salary recognition of the MFA as equivalent of the PhD and for the PhD among Librarians; increases in remuneration for overload teaching; increases in stipends for those ASMs carrying out administrative duties, tuition relief for dependants of ASMs; improvements in insured employee benefit plans; an increase in PDER and an improvement in the claim process; and significant pension reform as well as a salary increase of roughly 15% over three years. This increase would bring MUNFA to parity with other comprehensive Canadian universities.
- SWGC Academic Freedom & Grievance Triennial Review Committee
- The report of the SWGC AF&G Triennial Review for the period of 1998 - 2001 was distributed. A number of recommendations were made by the Committee. The Executive has acted on a number of the recommendations including the purchase of a teaching remission for the SWGC AF&G Chair.
- Approval of General Meeting Minutes of October 29, 2002
(G03:003) MOVED (M. Hackett/D. Mulcahy) that the minutes of October 29, 2002 be approved. MOTION CARRIED
- Matters Arising from General Meeting Minutes of October 29, 2002
There were no matters arising as items were raised and reported on under specific agenda items.
- Collective Agreement Administration
- Report from Academic Freedom & Grievance (AF&G) Committee: Dr. Ted Hannah (Chair, AF&G) reported on behalf of the Committee.
- Since the October 2002 General Meeting, the AF&G Committee have dealt with 34 queries and requests for advice.
- One new grievance was filed and a second is in preparation.
- Four individual grievances have been resolved and AF&G participated in the closure of two association grievances.
- Eleven grievances remain unresolved. Six are at various stages of arbitration. MUNFA also awaits arbitrator's report on a couple of grievances.
- Seven Association grievances are at various stages of the grievance process.
- The issues of individual grievances include the imposition of discipline, issues around LTD arrangements, promotion, sabbatical leaves, access to graduate student supervision, etc.
- Association grievances involve pension contributions, compulsory course evaluations, banked time policy, definition of membership in the bargaining unit, and inadequate notice of roof repairs.
In closing Dr. Hannah thanked the MUNFA staff for their assistance and his colleagues on the committee.
Dr. Hannah noted that a query was received from a faculty member regarding release time (teaching remission) for the AF&G Chair. MUNFA has not, to date, purchased release time for the St. John's AF&G Committee. Clause 1.17 of the Collective Agreement allows for a one-half release for two officers of the Association; it has been the practice that this release be granted for the President and AF&G Chair.
- Report of the Joint Association/University Relations Committee: Dr. Schipper reported that the Joint Committee meet bimonthly. There are no items which require an update.
- Other Business
There was no other business for discussion.
(G03:004) MOVED (J. Church/C. Dennis) that the meeting adjourn.