Weekly Update – April 17
April 17, 2020
Weekly Update – April 17
Shift to Weekly Updates
For most of the last month, we have been sending you daily updates on the COVID-19 situation and its affects on CUASA members. With the winter term at an end, and with the need for daily updates having slowed down, we have decided to instead switch to weekly updates for the time being. We anticipate sharing our weekly updates on Friday afternoons, so you can expect them then. Of course, should anything urgent come up, we’ll share that straight away. You can also find all of our COVID-19 updates on our website.
We met with the Employer again today at the Joint Committee for the Administration of the Agreement (JCAA). Here are some updates from that meeting.
Discussions about the Fall term are ongoing. The University has struck a committee that is currently exploring possible scenarios for the fall, and we have been assured that CUASA will be consulted before any final decisions are made. We have asked the University to do this as expeditiously as possible so members will have time to prepare.
We also made it clear to the University that we would like to see a proper campus-wide consultation for any plans or models to phase in returning to campus.
The University has said any members requesting to defer upcoming sabbaticals will fall under the provisions of the collective agreement. CUSASA does not agree with this decision, as it is disadvantageous to those who are not able to carry out their plans. We made it clear that we do not agree that following the procedures in the collective agreement are right in these circumstances, since if a member chooses to defer their sabbatical, they will not have the service time from that deferral credited to their next sabbatical. We also pointed out that there are deadlines in the collective agreement for deferring sabbaticals. The University has assured us that CUASA members will be allowed to make the decision to defer their sabbatical beyond the normal deadlines. However, there was no further information provided on the service credit as a result of a deferral. We hope discussions on this topic will continue.
Despite what some members have reported hearing from their Deans, the University has assured us that the fund in the collective agreement for purchasing ergonomic office equipment can be used to purchase equipment for use at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, any equipment purchased with this will be expected to be returned to the university when campus reopens. We await more information on logistics and arrangements for accessing these funds.
CUASA Business and Events
Interim Bylaw 20(A)
Today, CUASA Council has ratified the implementation of the interim Bylaw 20(A) – Emergency Electronic Voting for General Membership Meetings (COVID19 Crisis). This new bylaw will permit CUASA to hold the April General Meeting electronically, since an in-person meeting is not currently possible. The bylaw also allows for electronic votes by the membership when Council determines such votes are required before the membership can be reasonably assembled in person, such as the vote required to pass the annual budget. Note, this bylaw will be automatically revoked on September 30, 2020, unless specifically renewed by Council in accordance with Article IV of the Constitution. You can read the full Bylaw 20(A) here.
April General Meeting
In accordance with Article VIII of the CUASA Constitution, this is to provide notice of the April General Meeting (AGM). The AGM will take place on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 from 1:00-3:00pm. The meeting will be held online using Zoom. More details, including the agenda, will be sent early next week.
Reminder for Steering Nominations
The nominations period is open for executive positions on the CUASA Steering committee. Information on the nominations process, and a list of open positions, can be found on our How to Volunteer page. Nominations are open until Monday, April 27.
If you are interested in any of the open positions, we strongly ask that you consider running. CUASA Council has decided that a teaching release will be made available to anyone who takes a position on Steering. The work of the Association continues, despite the current environment we find ourselves in. Remember that our Association is only as strong as its membership, so we count on the time and commitment of our members to achieve our goals.
Carleton Community Announcements
This is a message from FSEAP Ottawa: As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses within Canada, we recognize that employees may be experiencing a variety of emotions and adverse circumstances. We would like to take this time to remind you that in addition to mental health counselling services, FSEAP also provides employees with numerous other work/life benefits. *Please note that in respect of social distancing guidelines, all appointments will be held through either telephone or video conference. We would further like to remind you that there are additional alternative points of access for EAP services. Employees can submit an online request for services through our website or through our recently launched mobile app, available on the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store. Through both our website and app you may log in and access informational pages and submit a request for services by using the following username and password, or your customized login information: username: fseapottawa and password: myfseap
Additional contact information for FSEAP: 24/7:1.866.553.3336 TTY: 613.725.6175
Academic Community at Large
OCUFA has partnered with its benefits partner Eckler to offer a free financial wellness seminar for members. The seminar is not intended to provide specific financial advice but rather some broad principles of financial wellness in a crisis as well as a summary of the array of programs now available via the federal government for those in financial distress.
• tips and ideas on how to assess your current financial position
• information about the current relief measures available to Canadians
• where to find sources of liquidity or cash
• key personal information for emergencies and creditors
The workshop is open to all OCUFA members across the province. It will take place on Tuesday, May 12 at 10:00am. Please contact the CUASA Office for connection details.