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Collective Agreement Ratified

Members of the University of Guelph Faculty Association (UGFA), which represents about 800 faculty members, librarians and veterinarians, and the University ratified the tentative agreement that was reached July 28th.

Negotiating teams representing UGFA and the University worked diligently to reach this agreement, and we want to express our appreciation to members of both bargaining teams for their hard work and dedication.

Judy Sheeshka (President, UGFA)
Maureen Mancuso (Provost and Vice-President Academic)




Parties have reached a tentative agreement

After 5 months of negotiations and two sessions with mediator Bill Kaplan, the UGFA and the University's Administration have reached a tentative agreement. It is now up to you, the Member, to decide if you agree with the proposed changes. The ratification vote will be occuring electronically this year. You should receive an email notification within the next day or so detailing the process for voting. If you do not receive this email, or if you have troubles logging on, please contact the UGFA office via [email protected] email or by calling 519.824.4120, ext. 52126.




Why are we going to Mediation?


While we have been in negotiations for approximately 4 months now (since March 29th), it has become apparent that we are now down to the issues in which both sides seem to have fundamental differences. Both parties have agreed to bring in an outside mediator (William Kaplan) to help reach a mutually acceptable agreement. Bill is the same mediator we used during the last round of negotiations. He has a great deal of experience with mediation in the university sector and we are fairly confident he will be able to aid the parties in reaching a fairly negotiated collective agreement.


As noted in the last issue of the Negotiator, a Mediator cannot make a binding decision on matters of dispute, but may be able to provide pressure on the parties to resolve the issue.


A number of articles and issues have been agreed to in principle. Unfortunately we cannot report anything as definite as any issue/article may be brought back to the table depending on what happens during the next few weeks.


However, we can inform you that the issues we reported to you in the Negotiator Issue 3 still stand. Neither side has been able to come to an agreement on the issues of Compensation (including the removal of Performance Increments for Members rated as Good, and removal of all performance increments for Veterinarians) and Conflict of Commitment/Conflict of Interest. We are currently hard at work putting together our position papers essentially an outline of our main concerns and why we believe our position on the issue is reasonable. The mediator will read over both parties position papers and then try to come to a reasonable conclusion.


We worked incredibly hard during the last round of negotiations to obtain a good contract, and are not willing to accept any losses in what we already have.

Mediation is tentatively set for July 22nd and July 27th.





Negotiations go to Mediation

The University of Guelph and the University of Guelph Faculty Association have been engaged in negotiating a renewal contract since the end of March 2011. Progress is being made, and both parties remain committed to reaching a collective agreement. Toward this end, the parties have mutually agreed to engage the services of a third-party mediator. The parties are pleased that William Kaplan has agreed to assist in their continued discussions at the bargaining table.

As you will know, the current collective agreement expires June 30, 2011. Please be assured that the terms and conditions of the collective agreement will continue as the parties are at mediation.

Maureen Mancuso, Provost and Vice-President (Academic)
Judy Sheeshka, President (UGFA)



Compensation and Pensions Tabled


Today the UGFA is tabling our proposed article on financial compensation, and Management is tabling their proposed article on pensions. This marks the beginning of discussions on monetary matters. We have already tabled all of our non-monetary proposals, and are still waiting on responses to the majority of these. Please note that we will be organizing two General Meeting for Members to discuss the status of negotiations. The first meeting is tentatively scheduled for Monday May 16th from 4:00 - 5:30 in MacKinnon Room 115.



Negotiatons by the Numbers
9 Meetings to date at the bargaining table
27 Hours to date at the bargaining table
54 Articles & LOUs exchanged to date
26 Articles / clauses tentatively resolved


*Please note: in this round of negotiations, we have decided to tentatively sign-off on specific clauses (mostly editorial amendments) that we can reach agreement on before we sign-off on the whole article. The numbers in the table reflect not only signing-off on whole articles, but also signing-off on specific clauses in articles which may still be open.



Update on negotiation meetings

Here is a quick update on the progress we have made at the bargaining table to date.


Negotiations by the Numbers
5 Meetings to date at the bargaining table
11 Hours to date at the bargaining table
32 Articles exchanged to date
9 Articles tentatively resolved




Negotiations have begun

As you may be aware, our current Collective Agreement expires on June 30th, 2011. We have entered into negotiations with Management with the first official meeting occurring on March 29th, 2011.



Negotiation Principles Approved


We are happy to announce that the UGFA Members have passed a motion to approve the negotiation principles put forth by our Negotiating Team at today's General Meeting. Additionally, the membership also put forward and approved a motion for a vote of confidence in the current Negotiating Team, headed by Professor Jim Mahone.