NOVEMBER 2022 Bargaining Updates:

TA/RA and Exam Invigilators:

Good afternoon PSAC 555 Unit 1 membership (TAs, Ras, & Exam Invigilators):

Your Bargaining Team will be going into bargaining for your new agreement (working conditions) at the end of the fall term  and would like to hear from you.

Please let them know what is important to you by filling in the following surveys.

 PSAC Local 555 Exam Invigilator Bargaining Input Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Local555ExamInvigilatorBargainingInputSurvey

PSAC Local 555 Teaching and Research Assistant Bargaining Input Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/TeachingAndResearchAssistantBargainingSurvey

As a member you may also submit a bargaining proposal:

  • No need to compose bargaining input into contract language
  • State the issue you propose for improvement, clarification, or the addition of a new provision
  • If applicable, cite any Article in your existing collective agreement (but not necessary, as this can be found later)
  • Provide some rationale (reasons) for the proposal & if available, any supporting information or materials

What makes a good bargaining proposal?

  • One that is rooted in addressing workplace problems and members’ needs
  • Related to a matter/issue that currently has some momentum – i.e. as part of an ongoing campaign, perhaps in your local, committees, region, or among other directly charted locals
  • A provision that has precedent – they already exist in other collective agreements, be they PSAC CAs or of other bargaining agents that you are aware of through family, friends, colleagues

Your Bargaining Negotiations Team:

  • Nabeel Ahmed Syed
  • Roya Dehghani (alternate Somayeh Foroughi)
  • Heidi Kates (alternate Kaitlynn Gambier)
  • PSAC Lead Negotiator: Rachel Besharah

Sessional and Clinical Instructors:

You are still bargaining but we don’t return to the table until December.

We are still at an impasse on the workload with the employer.  And we have filed an unfair labour practice against the employer for our Clinical Instructors.

One of our bargaining demands is that they are covered (paid) for 3rd party training/ orientations that are normally 8-16 hours per term- outside of the contract dates.

Last Winter 2022, the employer decided to just lengthen the contract from 16 weeks to 18 weeks to cover the 3rd party training dates.

This was a cost-saving move on behalf of the employer and it circumvented our bargaining demand.  Hence, the unfair labour practice complaint.

If you are a CI and this happens to you please let our office know so that if there is a settlement- we can make sure you are included.

 

Your Bargaining Negotiations Team:

  • Kadeen Briscoe
  • Danny Pincivero
  • Bic Ngo
  • PSAC Lead Negotiator: Rachel Besharah

Post-Doctoral Fellows:

The bargaining team representing Postdocs at Ontario Tech U has been in
negotiations with the University since July and recently spent two days
bargaining in October. In this round of negotiations, we are fighting for the issues
that you told us are important to Postdocs. This includes job security, more
opportunities for teaching and professional development, and fair wages and
benefits.
Although we have come to an agreement on some minor issues, the University
has refused to agree to almost any of our proposals.
Our proposal encourages projects with multi-year funding to grant appointments
longer than one year. The University has refused.
Our proposal is to have Postdocs apply for teaching positions as internal
candidates (after sessional lecturers). The University has refused.
Our proposal is that postdocs facing discipline be told what they are accused of
before their disciplinary meeting. The University has refused.
We have not yet presented our wage proposal, but we hope that the University
will show more openness to those proposals than they have to anything so far.
Our success at the bargaining table depends on your support! If you have any
questions about bargaining or would like to get involved, please contact us at
OFFICE@PSAC555.CA !

Our Bargaining Team:
Dr. Emmanuel Galiwango
Dr. Yasser Elsayed
Mathieu Brûlé, PSAC Negotiator

 

If you have any questions about bargaining or the union, please direct them to our local union representatives by email at Office@PSAC555.ca.

 

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PSAC555 2022 Summer Term Bargaining Updates:

TA/RA and Exam Invigilators:

Your CA is up for renewal this Fall- so we will be going into contract negotiations in Fall 2022.

We will be circulating a survey in the Fall to all our members.  If you have any questions or concerns that you would like the survey to address please let us know at Office@PSAC555.ca prior to August 1.

 

Your Bargaining Negotiations Team:

  • Nabeel Ahmed Syed
  • Roya Dehghani (alternate Somayeh Foroughi)
  • Heidi Kates (alternate Kaitlynn Gambier)
  • PSAC Lead Negotiator: Rachel Besharah

Sessional and Clinical Instructors:

You are still in bargaining but we don’t return to the table until the second week of September. 

We are still at an impasse on workload with the employer.  And we have filed an unfair labour practice against the employer for our Clinical Instructors.

One of our bargaining demands is that they are covered (paid) for 3rd party training/ orientations that are normally 8-16 hours per term- outside of the contract dates.

Last Winter 2022, the employer decided to just lengthen the contract from 16 weeks to 18 weeks to cover the 3rd party training dates.

This was a cost-saving move on behalf of the employer and it circumvented our bargaining demand.  Hence, the unfair labour practice complaint.

If you are a CI and this happens to you please let our office know so that if there is a settlement- we can make sure you are included.

 

Your Bargaining Negotiations Team:

  • Kadeen Briscoe
  • Danny Pincivero
  • Reza Alipour
  • PSAC Lead Negotiator: Verda Cook

Post-Doctoral Fellows:

Our bargaining team for Post-Doctoral Fellows met with the University on July 5 and 6 to start negotiations for our next collective agreement. We exchanged proposals with the University. Our proposals are meant to improve your working conditions and include several priorities, such as:

 

  • fair wages
  • workload and work/life balance
  • teaching opportunities
  • job security
  • ensuring that the rights of Post-Docs are respected.

  

Your Bargaining Team:

Azam Asilian Bidgoli

Yasser Elsayed

Emmanuel Galiwango

Hussien Hegab

Mathieu Brûlé (PSAC Negotiator)”

 

If you have any questions about bargaining or the union, please direct them to our local union representatives by email at Office@PSAC555.ca.

 

 

In Solidarity,

 

PSAC555

Communication Committee

_____________________________________________

Bargaining update -Winter 2022 term

Dear Sessional Lecturer members of PSAC Local 555,

Your bargaining team began conciliation on January 10. We continued conciliation on January 14 & January 31.  Will be back on February 4, and 11.

We continue to advocate strongly for more job security, fair workloads, and a clear right to disconnect language, but so far the University has been unwilling to make these improvements to our collective agreement. We are hitting a wall.

They have told us over and over that, we are only short-term contract workers who are needed just to replace faculty members when they take their leaves of absence.

The reality is many of us have been teaching at Ontario Tech for many years and in many faculties, Sessional Instructors teach a significant percentage of courses on an ongoing basis, year in and year out.

In terms of workload, it continues to rise. While our rates of pay are based on teaching one 3 credit course, we are often required to teach extra labs and tutorials without any additional pay because of increasing class sizes. New statistics from MacLean’s magazine rates Ontario Tech as the university with the second-highest undergraduate student-to-faculty ratio in Canada.

Finally, we remain frustrated with the University’s refusal to bargain right to disconnect language that would allow Sessional Instructors to chose not to respond to communication in the evenings and weekends unless it is during instructional time. Our proposal allows Sessional Instructors who want to work during evenings and weekends to do so, but also allows those who do not want to, not to be obligated to do so. Given the University continues to tell us that we are responsible for setting our own hours, we cannot understand their refusal to agree to this language.

Throughout this bargaining process, we have to meet continuously with the faculty association to discuss shared priorities and concerns.  The faculty association stands behind our demands and we are in solidarity with the faculty members as they move towards strike action.

If you have any questions about bargaining please reach out to a member of your bargaining team. We will continue to update you as conciliation continues.

In solidarity,

Your bargaining team:

Reza Alipour Moghadam Esfahani

Kadeen Briscoe

Hussien Hegab

Marie Polgar, Local 555 Resource Person

Darren Pacione, PSAC Research Officer

Verda Cook, PSAC Negotiator

 

 

STRIKE ALERT RESOURCES:

________________________________________________________

 

Bargaining update Fall 2021

Dear Sessional Lecturer members of PSAC Local 555,

Your bargaining team returned to the bargaining table on October 5 and 12 to continue to bargain non-monetary proposals with the University (the Employer).

Non-monetary proposals are all the bargaining proposals that don’t have a financial cost to the University. (In bargaining, we resolve non—monetary issues first before we move on to the monetary proposals).

On October 13, we received an email from the Employer advising us that the University would be applying for conciliation.

Conciliation, which brings in a third-party Conciliation Officer, is the next step in the bargaining process, once the parties have been unable to conclude a tentative agreement together.

We were surprised by the Employer’s decision because we are not at an impasse. Also, we have not yet tabled our monetary proposals so the Employer’s decision to move to conciliation is premature.

We are also very discouraged by the Employer’s behaviour towards us at the bargaining table and will be seeking a legal opinion on the Employer’s refusal to bargain issues with us, stating they will not discuss them because there are grievances filed on issues related to our proposals.

On a positive note, however, we continue to advocate for job security (including earlier notice of appointments) and less workload (workloads have been increasing dramatically), as you have asked us to. We will continue despite the challenges to stay strong and advocate for improved working conditions.

Over and over, we have made it clear to the University that job security and workload are the Union’s key priorities in our non-monetary bargaining this round.

We have also continued to hold meetings with the faculty association to discuss shared priorities and concerns. The faculty association will stand behind our demands and we ask our members to show solidarity and support to the faculty members as they also push for better working conditions.

Finally, we believe it is time to hold another membership meeting to discuss bargaining and strike mandates.

The meeting will take place on Monday, October 29th at 10:00 am.

Please show your support by attending this meeting and discussing the next steps in our bargaining process.

Please RRSP for this meeting to Office@PSAC555.ca

If you have any questions about bargaining please reach out to a member of your bargaining team.

In solidarity,

Your bargaining team:

Reza Alipour Moghadam Esfahani

Kadeen Briscoe

Hussien Hegab

Marie Polgar, Local 555 Resource Person

Darren Pacione, PSAC Research Officer

Verda Cook, PSAC Negotiator

__________________________________________________________________

Mission Posted July 16

 

CONFIDENTIAL: August 30th Mission Details 

 

Bargaining Priorities!

Job Security

Sessional Lecturers have spoken loud and clear that we want more job security. Sessional lecturing is a career and Sessional Lecturers should be entitled to guarantees on sessional course appointments and more notice on course appointments.

Your bargaining team has tabled job security-related proposals, including:

  • A University commitment to offering multi-terms appointments in each faculty;
  • Appointment offers (no need to apply) for sessional lecturers who have taught the course
  • before;
  • Appointments are offered months in advance of the course start dates;
  • Internal postings are posted 8 weeks in advance of the course start dates;
  • Course appointments based on seniority;

Workload

Our rates of pay are based on 36 hours of instructional time but many of our members are finding themselves working much more because of growing class sizes. This is not fair.

Your bargaining team has tabled workload-related proposals, including:

  • Caps on class sizes; and
  • Language that excludes Sessional Lecturers from doing tutorial work.

Other non-monetary proposals

In addition to job security and workload proposals, your bargaining team is also pushing for:

  • Longer access to our internal email account (up to three years so that we can continue to apply internally for appointments);
  • Sessional Lecturer inclusion in all university committees that discuss and/or make decisions that affect our working conditions;
  • Distinct definition and description of job duties, appointment letter, and orientation for Clinical Instructors;
  • Agreements on telework and technological change;
  • A right to union representation at performance evaluation meetings; and
  • The right to refuse to cross a picket line (so we can be in solidarity with other unionized university staff).

_____________________________________________________________________

July 12th, 2021Bargaining update
Dear Sessional Lecturer members of PSAC Local 555,
Your bargaining team has started negotiating your new collective agreement with the
University.
Preparation for bargaining involved your bargaining team meeting frequently over the
past few months to review all your bargaining input and prepare our bargaining
proposals.
We have also been holding meetings with the faculty association to discuss shared
priorities and concerns and we will continue to meet with the faculty association
throughout this round of bargaining.
Over the course of seven (7) days in June we connected with the Employer’s bargaining
team to table and receive each other’s non-monetary proposals.
Non-monetary proposals are all the bargaining proposals that don’t have a financial cost
to the University. In bargaining, we usually bargain non—monetary issues first before
we move on to the monetary proposals.
We have heard loud and clear from Sessional Lecturers through our input call and our
bargaining survey that you all want more job security (including earlier notice of
appointments) and less workload (workloads have been increasing dramatically).
We have made it clear to the University that job security and workload are the
Union’s key priorities in our non-monetary bargaining this round.
We will be back at the bargaining table in October to continue to push for improvements
to job security and workload issues, on your behalf.
In the meantime, we will have a virtual membership meeting on August 30 at 4:30 pm to
discuss job security in more detail with you.
We need your involvement and engagement in the bargaining process to achieve these
important improvements to our working conditions.
Please show your support by attending this meeting and sharing your concerns and
ideas with us! Please RRSP for this meeting to Office@PSAC555.ca
If you have any questions about bargaining please reach out to a member of your
bargaining team.In solidarity,

Your bargaining team:
Reza Alipour Moghadam Esfahani
Dawn Balsdon
Hussien Hegab
Marie Polgar, Local 555 Resource Person
Darren Pacione, PSAC Research Officer
Verda Cook, PSAC Negotiator