Fall 2019 end-of-term round-up of FAUW activities

Before everyone disappears for the holidays (who are we kidding, most of you won’t see this until January), here’s a quick re-cap of what we’ve been doing this term, including an update on our priorities for 2019–20.

How we’re doing on our 2019–20 goals so far

  • Policy development: We are in the midst of some big discussions about how to improve our policy development process as a whole. Policy 33 (ethical behaviour) is moving along—FRC is processing 100 pages of feedback from the University community and will give direction on changes in the new year. Bryan is still hoping to get this approved before his term is up! Policies 14 (parental leave), 57 (accommodations), and 76 (faculty appointments) are still in progress.
  • Conflict of interest guidelines: Faculty Relations Committee is finalizing these.
  • Workload: We distributed a questionnaire to our Council of Representatives and are finishing up gathering the last of those and starting to analyze the information. We will share the results with our members next term.
  • Representation: Both research professors and our membership voted to support our position statement on representing research professors. This is at the Faculty Relations Committee now.

11 other things that happened this term

  1. We corrected a slight miscalculation in this year’s FPER amount—next year’s FPER will have an extra $8 to make up for this.
  2. We advocated for some lecturer members who were denied retirement benefits because of an unclear definition of “regular service.” We’re working to clarify that definition with HR. We recommend you get your eligibility for retirement health benefits in writing from HR before you submit your retirement paperwork. And everyone (especially lecturers) should make sure their “continuous service date” is correct in Workday (to view your profile, click on the cloud icon, then your name).
  3. The IST Media Resources Librarian position was eliminated and we’re looking into the fall-out. This was the sole source of specialized expertise in copyright licensing for use of film on campus. Faculty are also now having trouble acquiring new licences for their classes.
  4. Bill 100 became law, which means the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities can create regulations to reduce the salary of faculty members who are collecting a pension. OCUFA has heard that the government has no plans to actually use this power.
  5. Bill 124 became law. This limits total compensation (excluding merit) for “broader public sector” employees in Ontario to no more than a 1% increase each year for three years. It will affect our next salary settlement (2021-2023). Public sector unions have filed a court challenge and OCUFA is considering its options.
  6. We sent our usual strike fund support to the UNBC Faculty Association (whose strike ended December 17) and the OSSTF.
  7. Dan Brown became FAUW’s president-elect. He’ll start his two-year term next fall.
  8. We had an on-campus meeting with the NDP Critic for Colleges and Universities, Chris Glover, along with the Staff Association.
  9. We published profiles of seven faculty members on our blog. 
  10. We held a dozen events, including a standing-room-only lunch & learn on faculty leaves. You can get all the info we shared at that event on the Leaves page of our faculty guide.
  11. We appointed representatives to a handful of committees and working groups:
    • Heather Mair to the Hagey Lectures Committee
    • Peter Johnson to the Online Teaching Awards Evaluation Committee
    • Mathieu Doucet to the new Transportation and Commuting Working Group
    • Ranjini Jha to the Pension Investment Committee
    • Laura McDonald to the University’s internal communications review

Looking ahead to 2020

In Winter 2020, we’ll have further progress on those four key goals, and we expect to hear from (and respond to) CEPT2—the second phase of the Course Evaluation Project—and the Complementary Teaching Assessment Project Team.

Next term’s events include:

  • lunch & learns on definite-term contracts, the UW scheduling process, and preparing for retirement
  • an info session about service opportunities at FAUW
  • a lecturer town hall
  • a workshop for mid-career faculty
  • our usual tenure workshops
  • the Indigenization reading circle

We’ll have details about these events and others from the Indigenization Working Group and Equity Committee on our website (and in your inbox) soon!

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