COVID-19 MUNFA Update on Sabbatical

As noted in our last communiqué, MUNFA recognizes that our current situation has created new and complex challenges for many academic staff members (ASMs). As always, MUNFA staff and volunteers are here to support you. We continue to work on your individual and collective behalf. If you have questions, concerns or suggestions, please reach out to us at

Earlier today, members of the MUNFA Executive Committee met again with Faculty Relations to discuss the current situation at Memorial and seek agreement on a number of matters that are important to our members. While discussions between the Parties on concerns surrounding Promotion & Tenure, support for online course delivery, etc., have not yet concluded, we can provide an update to ASMs on the matter of Sabbatical Leave.

It is MUNFA’s understanding that requests for deferral of sabbatical leave scheduled starting Fall 2020 are being approved due to the current COVID-19 pandemic. Clause 22.24 of the Collective Agreement notes that:

If a sabbatical leave has been granted, it is expected that the ASM will take the leave unless unforeseen personal hardship will ensue or unless the proposed activity must be cancelled or delayed due to circumstances beyond the control of the ASM. Requests for cancellation or delay must be submitted in writing to the Administrative Head and shall not be unreasonably denied. If a sabbatical is cancelled, or delayed beyond one (1) year, a new application must be filed.”

If you would like to discuss your request for deferral of sabbatical leave, or any other concerns, with MUNFA please get in touch with us at