This issue is currently under discussion with the administration and we will inform our members as soon as an agreement is reached. The UNBC FA proposes that sabbaticals be completely spared from a strike (i.e. they would continue to receive their normal sabbatical salary, have access to research funds, have access to their office, be reimbursed for research expenses, etc.). This proposal is in line with my decision to join UNBC and the many messages I have received from the academic community calling for UNBC to continue to focus on its mission as a regionally responsive research university, which strives for excellence in teaching, research and service. The improved increments would be based on a career development review and added to the faculty`s base salary. The CDI “strengthening” project is a real elimination of ILCs, as the CDI system would be transformed into a comprehensive performance system that is not effective with any of our comparison subjects or a unionized university. The proposed compensation system, but even more divided than — is based on the broken system that led the SFU faculty to form unions last year. On behalf of the CNC Faculty Association, I offer UNBC-FA our continued solidarity and support in your demanding ambition to reach a fair agreement. Please don`t hesitate to call us if you need it. The Union of Faculties of Saint-Marie University wishes to express its sense of solidarity with UNBC-FA, as you make progress towards union action. We hope that your work will be brief and that you will be able to negotiate a fair and reasonable collective agreement as soon as possible. Unfortunately, work that does not concern anyone has no impact.
If there was a way to convince the employer of the seriousness with which we set our priorities without disrupting the university function, we would certainly do so. The fundamental disagreement is whether UNBC can continue to thrive when working conditions are much worse than at other comparable universities in Canada. The inability to attract and retain powerful research faculties at UNBC would have a very negative impact on UNBC students. In particular, it would affect our ability to involve students in research in the classroom and beyond. Specific themes include reducing job security for the faculty, the worst pay structure of a comparable institution and negligible benefits after retirement. The financial commitments that are taken into account in collective bargaining are long-term and go well beyond the duration of a collective agreement. The overall compensation package proposed by the university under the five-year contract adds $4.5 million to the compensation of FA members and provides a solid foundation on which to build. In comparison, the Faculty Association`s compensation proposal, which was costed over the same five-year period, was estimated by UNBC to cost more than $20 million, including benefits. Some of these issues, such as teaching reimbursements, are entirely under the control of the employer and these questions should be directed to the UNBC administration.
Others, such as the semester extension, are negotiated in a return-to-work agreement. The answers to these questions depend in part on the duration of the strike. In fact, these two years followed two previous years, in which faculty allowances did not increase at all. In addition, in 2012-u20122014, increases were granted by arbitration over the mandate of the CESP, precisely because the salary of the UNBC faculty was so low. As Adjudicator Vince Ready said in his decision (arbitration award), UNBC presented compelling evidence of the “low/lower position” of the UNBC faculty as compensation among its comparators. Given that the GWI has increased wages as a whole, but wages are not new, the same problems we saw in the previous round persist.