As noted in our update of March 18, 2022, the MUNFA and MUNL Negotiating Committees met from March 29-30 to continue collective bargaining.
Where We Agree
MUNFA has continued to secure commitments from the employer on a number of key issues. In addition to the items noted in our last update, the Parties have agreed on the following:
- Introducing more inclusive language in Article 22, specifically broadening the terminology for Maternity Leave to include Pregnancy and Birthing Leave.
- Faculty being considered for early tenure as under Clause 11.22 will be assessed under the same criteria for a Faculty member seeking tenure in their 6th year (Assistant Professor) or 3rd year (Associate Professor), as opposed to having to meet an undefined expectation of “superior performance.” In turn, the Parties have agreed that if an ASM is considered for early tenure and does not satisfy the tenure criteria their tenure-track appointment shall not be extended but will be offered a 1-year terminal appointment.
- The employer has agreed to withdraw their proposal to introduce language in Clause 7.06(a) regarding Search Committees for Counselling Faculty. The language proposed by the employer would have permanently allowed the inclusion of non-Counselling Faculty Members on such Search Committees, regardless of the number of Faculty members in the Student Wellness and Counselling Centre (SWCC), reducing the need to properly resource the SWCC.
Governance, Openness, and Transparency
To support our Governance Working Group, MUNFA proposed language that would ensure the University considers the importance of collegial governance in all decisions relating to the terms and conditions of ASMs’ employment. To improve transparency, MUNFA presented language that would require the University to share copies of submissions to Government “which directly address the terms and conditions of employment of Members,” and that they share copies of any present and future articulation agreements with public and private institutions. These proposals were in direct response to the unnecessary secrecy surrounding the Board of Regent’s recommendations to revise the Memorial University Act and the lack of communication on newly signed Memorandums of Understanding with other institutions that have increased workload on MUNFA members.
The MUNL Negotiating Committee has rejected all of MUNFA’s proposals relating to governance, openness, and transparency and has made it clear that they do not want to involve or even inform MUNFA on matters which directly related to our members’ working conditions.
Despite signing on to the Memorial University Climate Crisis Pledge, the MUNL Negotiating Committee has rejected all of MUNFA’s proposals focused on Climate Action. These proposals included language that would ensure the University provides annual reports on steps taken to reduce carbon emissions, providing incentives for ASMs to use public transit, a commitment to install electric car charging stations on campus, and strengthening existing language that requires the University to take action and promote the use of bicycles, ride sharing, public transit, and all forms of active transportation to/from campus.
The University claims that the Collective Agreement isn’t the appropriate place to address the Climate Crisis but MUNFA was clear that the terms and conditions of our employment are directly impacted by the climate crisis.
Take Action to Support MUNFA’s Negotiating Committee
While MUNFA has gained a number of small victories, it’s becoming clear that the employer is only considering our working conditions in the simplest sense. We need your support to make it clear that the terms and conditions of our employment are directly impacted by climate crisis and by secretive, partnerships made with external agencies.
In anticipation of that next session, we encourage MUNFA members to email President Vianne Timmons (firstname.lastname@example.org), Director of Faculty Relations, Geoff Williams (email@example.com), and the Vice-President Academic (firstname.lastname@example.org) to make it clear that ASMs want to see clear improvements to our Collective Agreement. We ask that you copy MUNFA (email@example.com) on this call to action. A template message is included on the following page.
MUNFA’s Negotiating Committee will be back at the bargaining table on April 18-19 to continue the fight for a fair, equitable collective agreement.
MUNFA’s Negotiating Committee:
- Jon Church, Medicine (Co-Lead Negotiator)
- Nicole Power, Sociology (Co-Lead Negotiator)
- Dan Duda, QE II Library
- Patrick Gamsby, QE II Library
- John Hoben, Education
- Nathalie Pender, Grenfell Campus
- Janna Rosales, Engineering & Applied Science
- Ken Snelgrove, Engineering & Applied Science
- Erwin Warkentin, Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
- Travis Perry, MUNFA Labour Relations Officer (non-voting member)
- Dale Humphries, MUNFA Labour Relations Coordinator (non-voting member)
Sample Email of Support for MUNFA’s Negotiating Committee
Dear Dr. Timmons,
As an employee of Memorial University, my working conditions are directly impacted by and contribute to, the global Climate Crisis. As a signatory to the Climate Crisis Pledge, I call on the University administration to demonstrate their commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and meaningfully engage with MUNFA at the collective bargaining table.
Furthermore, if the University administration truly values collegial governance, transparency, and openness, especially on matters that directly impact my working conditions, I hope you will reconsider your position on MUNFA’s proposals that aim to strengthen these core principles.