Weekly Update – February 11, 2022
February 11, 2022
Weekly Update – February 11, 2022
Trucks Near Campus
The University has announced that it is aware that some trucks and equipment involved with the ongoing demonstration in downtown Ottawa are currently located on federal government property located at 1500 Bronson Avenue, across the river south of the Carleton campus.
This could understandably be distressing for CUASA members, particularly those who may be attending campus for in-person teaching or other activities. Both CUASA and the University are monitoring the situation closely.
Carleton has indicated that faculty and staff are encouraged to discuss concerns with their managers and can reach out to the Employee & Family Assistance Program if assistance or support is needed.
Hand Sanitizer Stations on Campus
CUASA received some messages from members expressing concern over empty hand sanitizer stations on campus. We raised this issue with Campus Health and Safety, who thanked CUASA members for bringing this forward.
Please review the University’s webpage for Building Preparation, which has some important information on multiple items, including directions that, should a hand sanitizer station require servicing, individuals are encouraged to notify the FMP Service Desk as soon as possible.
Member Drop-in Sessions
CUASA is excited to invite our members to two drop-ins continuing our outreach and educational initiatives. Both drop-ins will happen the week after reading week, dates to be confirmed. Registration info to follow.
Drop-in one: Calling all allies! This drop-in is for those who have lived experience as white settlers and want to talk through and learn more about how to be a good ally to our colleagues with lived experiences of discrimination based on race, culture, ancestry, Indigeneity, or ethnicity.
Drop-in two: Calling all folks with lived experiences of discrimination based on race, culture, ancestry, Indigeneity, or ethnicity. This one-hour drop-in will create a welcoming space for you to discuss your experiences of discrimination and also your relationship to CUASA as well as what you wish CUASA could do or do better for you.
Both groups will be closed, meaning that the group discussion and attendance will remain private and at a high-level only, with actionable items brought to the CUASA leadership.
CUASA is thrilled to be developing this progressive equity-based initiative of consultation and education. We also have exciting developments to come including workshops on ableism, LBGTQ+ issues and caregivers in and after the pandemic.
CUASA is LISTENING. If you have any thoughts on these initiatives, or ideas for different kinds of trainings or initiatives, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your equity officer (email@example.com) or any member of CUASA staff (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Steering. We are your association!
Student Experience Questionnaires for Winter Term
CUASA received numerous requests from members expressing concern about the University’s intention to return to using student experience questionnaires (SEQs) for career decisions this term. In particular, members were concerned that the shift to holding the first few weeks of the term online and the subsequent return to some in-person activities this week could have adverse effects on their SEQ results.
Today, the Association is pleased to announce that, following multiple requests to the University administration, CUASA has received confirmation that Carleton will allow SEQs for the Winter term to not be used for career decisions. This agreement in principle is still subject to formal agreement by means of a Letter of Understanding (LOU) between the parties at the JCAA.
It is expected that, as with the previous LOUs that were negotiated on this topic, members will continue to have the option of including their SEQ scores in their tenure, confirmation, and promotion applications should they choose to do so.
In its message to CUASA, the University did indicate that, moving forward to the Summer and Fall 2022 terms, it will return to using the SEQ results for career-related decisions.
Letter from the Provost re. CCAA and Program Closures
As announced recently, CUASA and Carleton University have completed the signing process for the 2021-2024 Collective Agreement.
One item that was included in the Minutes of Settlement (MOS) for the Renewal of the Collective Agreement was that the University Provost and Vice-President (Academic), Jerry Tomberlin, would write to CUASA’s President, Angelo Mingarelli, and confirm that for the life of the 2021-2024 collective agreement, the University does not intend to (i) apply for Companies Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) protection, or (ii) initiate requests to Senate to review programs for closure or restructuring unless such requests are initiated by the academic unit and approved by the appropriate Faculty Board(s).
The Association confirms that President Mingarelli received said letter from Provost Tomberlin earlier this week on Monday, February 7.
Workload Reassignments for Faculty
The Association has been made aware of numerous instances where members are being directly solicited to alter their workload assignments to make them teaching exclusive faculty. In the normal course, members may request to work teaching overloads by mutual agreement. The nature of the workload reassignments being observed are more permanent and with intent to change the nature of the actual appointment. CUASA members are advised to seek advice prior to considering these arrangements, particularly if they have not yet made applications for tenure and/or promotion. Additionally, the parties are currently in discussions at the Joint Parity Committee on Instructors (JPCI) to determine the nature of this type of stream and appropriate teaching dossiers to accompany them.
Constitution and Bylaws Review 2022
Your CUASA Internal Affairs Committee is currently preparing for an upcoming constitution and bylaws review process. All members are encouraged to watch for more updates and to participate in this important governance exercise. Separate communications with instructions on how to submit motions for constitutional or bylaw changes will be provided, as well as an information session.
In the interim, members who wish to participate in this internal administration activity of the union must ensure that they have signed their membership card for the Association. If you are unsure if you still need to sign your membership card, please email email@example.com or complete the card found here and submit it to the CUASA Office.
We also strongly encourage members to take the time to read the constitution and bylaws and refresh their memories in preparation for the upcoming governance activity.
Nominations for Steering Positions
We are accepting nominations for the following Steering Committee positions for terms beginning on July 1, 2022 (click on the position title to view the description):
- External Relations Officer
- Chair, Grievance Policy and Administration
- Instructor Representative
- Librarian Representative
Nominations for President are due to the virtual CUASA Office by Thursday, March 31, 2022. Nominations for all other positions are due by Friday, April 29, 2022. All nominations must be made using the form found here (PDF) or here (Word).
Information on the nominations process can be found on our How to Volunteer page. 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. Some of these positions come with a course release subject to the availability of funds (please ask if interested).
If you have any questions about the positions or the process, please contact CUASA’s Chair, Nominations and Elections, Marylynn Steckley, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy International Day for Women and Girls in Science!
Today, February 11, is the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, established by resolution of the United Nations General Assembly in 2015. This important day was declared in order to achieve full and equal access to and participation in science for women and girls, and further achieve gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls.
For more information on International Day for Women and Girls in Science, click here.
Academic Community Updates
University of Ontario Institute of Technology Faculty Association on strike
Members of the University of Ontario Institute of Technology Faculty Association (UOITFA) began striking this week after Ontario Tech University held firm to its “final offer”, one that was rejected by 80% of UOITFA members when brought to a vote.
The UOITFA stands ready to negotiate a fair deal that ends the strike. Thus far, the university still refuses to meaningfully address faculty members’ concerns around workload, education quality, equity, and retirement benefits.
The UOITFA has tabled proposals that would resolve these issues and create better working conditions for faculty and learning conditions for students, but the Ontario Tech administration refuses to continue bargaining or even to bring the outstanding issues to a third party for arbitration.
Show your support for UOITFA by sending a message to Ontario Tech’s University’s President, Provost, and Chair of the Board of Governors. Tell them to return to the bargaining table and take the necessary steps to end the strike. Together, we can get a fair deal that ends the strike.
Acadia University Faculty Association on strike
The Acadia University Faculty Association (AUFA) is entering the second week of a strike following an impasse with the administration at the table.
AUFA is seeking to increase the number of tenure-track faculty to meet rising student enrolment, make hiring and working conditions gains for precarious and Indigenous faculty, and keep salary improvements in line with cost-of-living increases.
CAUT is hosting an online campaign – Stand with Striking Academic Staff at Acadia! – asking allies to send letters to Acadia’s President, Provost, and Chair of the Board. The campaign has gathered close to 800 signatories.
University of Lethbridge Faculty Association on strike
Nearly 600 days after their collective agreement expired, academic staff at the University of Lethbridge are on strike. The University of Lethbridge Faculty Association (ULFA) has been in marathon bargaining sessions to reach a settlement that includes fair salaries, sustainable workloads, collegial governance, job security, and academic freedom.
In a historic strike vote, ULFA saw 92 percent approval for strike action with 87 percent of its members casting a ballot.
You can show your solidarity with ULFA by sending a message to the University of Lethbridge Board of Governors. Tell the administration to return to the bargaining table and take the necessary steps to reach a fair settlement.
Laurentian’s collapse driven by Ford government’s agenda of austerity and privatization
The Ford government’s obsession with austerity and privatization was a major driver of Laurentian University’s insolvency and collapse. This was the message OCUFA Board Chair Gyllian Phillips delivered to participants in “Our Movement, Our Fight, Our Future,” a webinar series focused on reclaiming power through labour organizing in Northern Ontario.
“Universities, especially northern universities, have been underfunded for decades,” said Phillips. “The funding models currently in place are not focused on improving education quality or research capacity. Instead, they have been linked to external economic factors, over which universities have little to no control.”
To keep reading, click here.
Labour Community Updates
Community Solidarity Rally and March
A coalition of local labour unions, community organizations and residents will be holding a rally at Lansdowne Park (behind Aberdeen Pavilion) tomorrow, Saturday, February 12, at 1:00pm, in solidarity with frontline workers and Ottawa residents affected by the current occupation of the downtown core and some surrounding areas.
The rally will also include a march of approximately 3km. This is a peaceful event. There is no intention to engage with the convoy.
For more information, click here.
Joint statement from Canada’s unions on the Ottawa occupation
From the Canadian Labour Congress:
“Canada’s unions have fought for generations for the right to protest. This is a cornerstone of our democratic system. But what we have witnessed on the streets of Canada’s capital over the past thirteen days is something different altogether. This is not a protest, it is an occupation by an angry mob trying to disguise itself as a peaceful protest.
We have seen an occupation of city streets and parks, disrupting workers, businesses and residents. Frontline workers, from retail to health workers, have been bullied and harassed. We have witnessed noise attacks keeping families up at all hours. We have seen right-wing extremists spreading messages filled with racism and intolerance, flying the Nazi and Confederate flags, alongside other symbols of violence and hate. We have seen organizers not only demand the end of all public health rules, but also call for the overthrow of our democratically elected government.
The leaders of this occupation include people who espoused Islamophobic, Anti-Semitic and racist hate on social media, organizers of the notorious far-right yellow vest protests, and people spreading extreme conspiracy theories and calls for violence. This is an attack on all of Canada and not just the people of Ottawa.
Canada’s unions stand together, unequivocally opposed to these vile and hateful messages and condemn the ongoing harassment and violence against the people of Ottawa.”
To read the full CLC statement, click here.