FAQs

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FAQs2016-12-11T02:48:05+00:00
Are we going on strike?2017-09-10T02:09:51+00:00

Your OPSEU bargaining team is bargaining for a collective agreement, not a work stoppage. We’ll go on strike only as a last resort.

When could a strike or lockout happen?2017-09-10T00:49:42+00:00

A strike can be called only after:

  1. there is no collective agreement in operation between the Council and the employee organization that represents the employee;
  2. a conciliation officer has made a report to the Minister of Labour under clause 7 (3) (b) to the effect that, despite his or her efforts, the terms of a collective agreement have not been settled and the Minister has informed the parties of the report by notice in writing in accordance with subsection 7 (4);
  3. the members of the bargaining unit have voted in favour of a strike by a vote by secret ballot conducted under the supervision of and in the manner determined by the Ontario Labour Relations Board;
  4. after a vote in favour of a strike in accordance with clause (c), the employee organization that represents the employee gives the Council and the employer written notice of the strike and of the date on which the strike will commence at least five days before the commencement of the strike; and
  5. 16 days have elapsed after the date on the Minister’s notice referred to in clause (b).  [CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 17 (1)]

It is important to note that a tentative agreement can still be reached at any point during this process.

It is also important to stress that the bargaining team never calls a strike lightly. It is only used when all other avenues for negotiation have failed and when the issues at stake are of sufficient importance.

Strike Deadline

Where there has been a ‘yes’ to a strike vote the union has the authority to set a strike deadline with 5 days’ notice to the employer. A strike deadline further increases pressure on the employer to reach a fair agreement.

Can bargaining continue after the strike vote?2017-09-10T00:50:41+00:00

Yes. In most cases, both parties feel strongly motivated to bargain seriously when the clock is ticking towards a strike deadline.

If there is a strike, how will I know when it starts?2017-09-10T00:51:01+00:00

Your bargaining team will communicate with all members throughout the bargaining process by email and through the bargaining website at www.collegefaculty.org.

Who will participate in a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T00:51:42+00:00

If a strike or lockout happens, all bargaining unit employees – full-time and partial-load – are on strike.

If I’m an acting manager, will I participate in a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T00:52:04+00:00

In the event of a strike or lockout, acting managers will be asked to return to the bargaining unit and will participate in the same way as all members of the bargaining unit.

How much is strike pay?2017-09-10T00:54:20+00:00

Under OPSEU policy, strike pay is provided to members who complete strike-related duties assigned by their local strike committee. Only signed-up members are eligible to receive strike pay. Strike pay is not taxable.

Delegates at the 2016 OPSEU Convention voted for a substantial increase in strike pay.

During weeks one to three, each member is entitled to strike pay of $40 per day (or $200 per week). Each dependant is entitled to $10 per day (or $50 per week).

During the fourth week, strike pay increases and each member is entitled to $60 per day (or $300 per week). Dependant pay remains the same at $50 per week.

A dependant is defined as:

  • a non-income-earning spouse (excluding a spouse on strike);
  • a child under 18 (or under 26 if attending school full-time) OR a dependant child as defined by the collective agreement or benefit plan;
  • a disabled family member; or
  • an elderly family member who normally receives financial support from the striking member.

If both spouses are on strike, both may claim the dependants.

What are strike duties?2017-09-10T00:56:02+00:00

These are duties assigned by your local strike committee that will help put maximum pressure on the employer to ensure the strike is as short as possible and that a new contract is reached as soon as possible. Strike duties may include picketing, running strike headquarters, handling strike logistics, lobbying politicians, talking to reporters, or any other duties that the local strike committee decides.

Remember, you should use your personal email to communicate about strike preparations – not the employer’s email.

How much time must I spend on strike duties to qualify for strike pay?2017-09-10T00:56:36+00:00

You must perform a minimum of four hours of strike duty per day, or a minimum of 20 hours per week, to be eligible for strike pay. Obviously, each local will want every member to put in as much time as possible to support the strike.

What about day care costs?2017-09-10T00:57:00+00:00

There are no provisions for day care costs while on strike. You must work with your local committees to make suitable arrangements or accommodations so you can fulfil your strike responsibilities.

Can I arrange to picket at a location that is closer to my home?2017-09-10T00:57:28+00:00

Yes, you can arrange to picket at a location that is not in your local. You will need to fill out Form J (Picketing/Accommodation Information), which can be found in the Strike Manual. This form must be submitted to your OPSEU regional office or staff representative. Once this is done, the strike finance chair can record your hours.

What if I am on an accommodation?2017-09-10T00:58:03+00:00

All members of a striking bargaining unit have the right to participate fully in the strike. However, some members may not be able to perform all strike duties. In such cases, the strike committee has a legal and moral obligation to modify the member’s strike duties to enable them to earn strike pay. This is called accommodation.

Members have a duty to inform their strike committee if they require an accommodation and to co‑operate in finding solutions.

Those requiring accommodation to perform modified strike picket duties must fill out Form J (Picketing/Accommodation Information), a copy of which is in the Strike Manual. Details of a member’s needs are confidential.

A member of the strike duties subcommittee shall be assigned to deal with requests for accommodation, which must be provided in a manner that respects the dignity of the person.

If I have financial commitments that I must fulfill, e.g., mortgage payments, loans, etc., what happens to them during the strike/lockout?2017-09-10T00:58:55+00:00

You will still be responsible for paying your bills, but you can often negotiate a hold on payment in the short term in the event of a strike.

Tips for budgeting during a strike or lockout:

  • Mortgages/rent: Talk to your bank, credit union, or landlord and negotiate a plan for the duration before the next payment is due.
  • Taxes: Ask if an accommodation can be arranged to defer property taxes.
  • Utilities: Make a request to spread your payments.
  • Loans: If your lender won’t allow a deferral, consider refinancing to reduce the payments.
  • Credit cards: Charging purchases while on strike is not recommended. Pay the minimum charge or use a line of credit with a lower interest rate.
  • Insurance: Investigate ways to spread out the premiums.
  • Child support: Contact your ex-spouse and try to work something out.
What is the local hardship relief committee?2017-09-10T00:59:25+00:00

This is a sub-committee of the local strike committee that assists and provides advice to members who may require additional help to get through the strike.

The local hardship relief committee is funded by the donations it is able to collect – it is not funded by OPSEU centrally. The committee may make recommendations to the local strike committee that some members, who are experiencing particular hardship, receive special assistance. Committee members may also communicate with local financial institutions about the strike and, where necessary, intercede with those financial institutions to help striking members meet their credit obligations until the strike is over.

Please note that the normal hardships of being on strike do not qualify a member for hardship relief. To qualify, a member must first exhaust all other reasonable options.

All members are strongly encouraged to continue to plan their personal finances. Contact your bank, credit union, your landlord, your daycare provider, etc., to discuss payment options. The earlier you make a plan, the better prepared you will be.

How can I help my local during the strike?2017-09-10T00:59:48+00:00

There are many duties involved in running a successful strike. Consider volunteering for strike committees in the areas of communications, finance, or logistics. Help make signs, help run the phone tree, and spread the word about the issues to your friends, family members, neighbours, faith group members, and your MPP. And visit the website at www.collegefaculty.org for more actions you can take to show your support for the team.

Do I still receive insured benefits if I end up on strike or locked out?2017-09-10T01:02:43+00:00

Under OPSEU policy, the union attempts to negotiate with the employer (prior to any work stoppage) to continue insured benefits if there is a strike or lockout.

Do I have to return employer-issued equipment if I end up on strike or locked out?2017-09-10T01:04:51+00:00

Yes, if asked, you must return all employer-issued equipment.

What happens if I am on vacation when a strike or lockout starts? Will I get paid?2017-09-10T01:05:25+00:00

No. You are considered to be on strike or locked out once a labour dispute starts. The employer is not obliged to give you vacation pay.

If my pre-approved vacation falls during a strike or lockout, will I get vacation pay?2017-09-10T01:05:53+00:00

No. There is no collective agreement in effect. The employer does not have to pay you vacation pay. You keep your vacation credits and can take approved vacation later.

Can I get short-term sick leave with pay when I’m on strike or locked out?2017-09-10T01:06:18+00:00

No, because the collective agreement does not apply.

What happens if I’m on short-term sick leave when a strike or lockout starts?2017-09-10T01:06:40+00:00

The employer will stop short-term sick leave benefits, but you can apply for Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits. Applications can be made directly by attending a Service Canada office. You may also check the Service Canada website. Be sure to keep copies of the forms and medical certificates related to your sick leave that you gave to your employer and Service Canada. You are responsible for any medical documentation completion fees, if charged by your doctor.

Am I eligible for Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:07:00+00:00

Maybe, if you can show that your leave was anticipated and arrangements for it had begun before a strike or lockout started. Being on short-term sick leave before a strike or lockout may show that your leave was anticipated. Inform the employer in writing of the dates of any scheduled surgery and anticipated recovery periods. Be sure to keep a copy for yourself at home.

However, be sure to check with Service Canada to determine whether your circumstances meet their entitlement for sickness benefits.

To apply for EI sickness benefits, I need my record of employment (ROE) from my employer. During a strike or lockout, can I get my ROE?2017-09-10T01:07:42+00:00

Your employer should give you your ROE. If you can’t get it, or there is a delay, don’t wait for your ROE. Apply as soon as possible – a temporary claim can be set up for you. Bring proof that you were working, such as pay stubs, to the EI office when you apply for benefits. If you informed your employer of any scheduled surgery or provided medical certificates for your sick leave, then take copies with you to the EI office.

EI has a one-week waiting period at the beginning of every claim. Will I have to wait the one week if I was on short-term sick leave before a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:10:37+00:00

If you were on short-term sick leave before a strike or lockout, EI may, upon request, waive the one-week waiting period. However, if your sick leave did not begin before the strike or lockout, and if you are approved for EI (because the leave was anticipated), then it is unlikely the one week waiting period will be waived. Ask Service Canada for clarification.

Can I participate in the strike or lockout while I’m receiving EI sickness benefits or in the one-week waiting period?2017-09-10T01:11:01+00:00

You could lose your EI sickness benefits if your involvement in the labour dispute leads EI to think you are well enough to return to work.

Will the amount of my EI sickness benefits be affected by a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:12:38+00:00

Possibly. The amount you receive is based on your best 14 to 22 weeks of earnings in the prior 52 weeks. The number of weeks used (14-22) is based on the rate of unemployment in your region. This is determined by EI. If you only worked 14 to 22 weeks in the past year, then the strike could affect the amount you receive from EI. But if you worked for more than 22 weeks in the last year, it’s unlikely to have any effect on the amount you receive.

Strike pay is not considered to be earnings for EI purposes, so it will not be deducted from your EI benefit.

Am I eligible for EI sickness benefits if I was on modified work (part-time or full-time) before the strike or lockout began?2017-09-10T01:13:02+00:00

No.

Does my OHIP coverage stop as a result of a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:13:51+00:00

No. OHIP is based on living in Ontario, not on being at work. If you had OHIP coverage before a strike or lockout and you keep living in Ontario, your OHIP coverage continues.

What happens to my pension during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:15:15+00:00

Neither you nor the employer pays into the pension plan during a strike or lockout. However, your membership in the plan continues, and you don’t lose any entitlement you had earned up to the date the strike/lockout began.

Will I be able to buy back the pension credits I lose during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:15:43+00:00

Yes. The cost of purchasing pensionable service after the strike will depend on when a strike occurs and when the purchase is made:

Should a strike occur in 2017 the member pays two times contributions based on the salary at the start of the work stoppage, and the contribution rates in effect during the strike.

It is important to note that should a strike occur after January 1, 2018, if a purchase is made within six months from the end of the strike, the member pays two times contributions based on the salary at the start of the work stoppage, and the contribution rates in effect during the strike.

If a purchase is made after 6 months the member pays the higher of two times the contributions, or the actuarial cost of the service being purchased.

Please contact the CAAT Pension Plan to request a costing at the conclusion of the strike or lockout.

It is important to note that the cost of a purchase is determined at the time that you make the purchase. Note that as a general rule, the cost of a leave gets more expensive the longer you wait to make the purchase.

Will a strike or lockout affect my early retirement dates?2017-09-10T01:16:14+00:00

The earliest retirement date of the end of the month you reach age 55 would not change (for members who would be eligible to retire as a result of being age 50 with at least 20 years of pensionable service, this date would be later as a result of the break in service from the strike if the member has not reached that 50/20 status by the time the strike starts.

However should a member purchase the service missed as a result of the strike, this would put them back on track). Eligibility for an early unreduced pension will also change with less service (and any reduction for an early start would be higher than with the service purchase.)

Can I retire during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:17:16+00:00

Yes, however the retirement processing is subject to the information provided to the Plan by your employer. Should you wish to retire while on strike you should contact the CAAT Pension Plan. You can contact them at 416-673-9000 or (toll-free) 1‑866-350-2228.

Please note that the employer must confirm the date you retire and provide the Plan with year-to-date financial information in order for the Plan to proceed with the retirement calculation. Therefore, the payment of your pension may be delayed if this information is not provided by your employer.

Can I make pension contributions if I’m on pregnancy, parental, or adoption leave? What if I’m getting WSIB benefits during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:16:49+00:00

No, you will not be able to make pension contributions during a strike or lockout if you are on pregnancy, parental or adoption leave. Normally pension contributions would come off of your top-up pay, which will not be paid during a strike or lockout.

If you are on WSIB there are no contributions required. One of the features of the CAAT Pension Plan is that contributions are waived for both the employee and the employer when an employee is on full WSIB benefits and for the first 12 months of partial WSIB benefits.

During a strike or lockout, can I apply to buy back pension credits for service prior to the strike, so as to be within time limits?2017-09-10T01:17:39+00:00

Yes. Contact the CAAT Pension Plan directly to arrange a buyback (other than the strike purchase) during the strike.

Will a strike or lockout have an impact on my best 60 consecutive months’ salary for pension calculations?2017-09-10T01:18:02+00:00

The strike period will have an impact on the Highest Average Pensionable Earnings (HAPE) as the HAPE would be based on the actual pensionable earnings and actual pensionable service accrued. The earnings and service that the member would have accrued during the strike period will be excluded unless a purchase is made.

If I die during a strike or lockout, will my survivors get their benefits under the pension plan?2017-09-10T01:18:25+00:00

As a member of the plan your spouse or beneficiaries are entitled to receive a survivor benefit based on the provisions laid out in the Plan Text.

Can I get regular EI if I’m not working because of a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:20:01+00:00

No. Generally, if you’re unable to work because of a strike or lockout, you can’t get regular EI benefits. However, you may be eligible for EI maternity, parental (includes adoption), sickness, or authorized training benefits.

What happens if I’m on maternity, parental, or adoption leave, and a strike or lockout starts? Will my EI benefits continue?2017-09-10T01:21:44+00:00

Yes, your EI benefits will continue for the duration of your leave.

Will I receive EI maternity, parental, or adoption leave benefits if my leave starts during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:22:17+00:00

Yes, if you can show you were arranging the leave before the strike or lockout. Prior to any strike or lockout write to the employer, stating your intent to take the leave. Be sure to keep a copy for yourself at home.

If I participate in the strike or lockout prior to the start of my prearranged maternity, parental, or adoption leave, will I still receive my EI benefits?2017-09-10T01:22:43+00:00

Yes, if you can show you were arranging the leave before the strike or lockout. Prior to any strike or lockout, write to the employer stating your intent to take the leave. Be sure to keep a copy for yourself at home.

Can I participate in a strike or lockout while I’m on maternity, parental, or adoption leave, and still receive my EI benefits?2017-09-10T01:23:09+00:00

Yes. However, keep in mind that EI pays these benefits on the assumption that you need the time off to care for your child. Strike pay is not considered to be earnings for EI purposes, so it won’t be deducted from your EI benefit.

Will the amount of my EI benefits be affected by a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:23:32+00:00

Possibly. The amount you receive is based on your best 14 to 22 weeks of earnings in the prior 52 weeks. The number of weeks used (14-22) is based on the rate of unemployment in your region. This is determined by EI. If you only worked 14 to 22 weeks in the past year, then the strike could affect the amount you receive from EI. But if you worked for more than 22 weeks in the last year, it’s unlikely to have any effect on the amount you receive.

To apply for EI maternity, parental, or adoption leave benefits I need my record of employment (ROE) from the employer. If my leave starts during a strike or lockout, can I get my ROE?2017-09-10T01:24:00+00:00

Your employer should give you your ROE. If you can’t get it, or if there’s a delay, bring proof that you were working, such as pay stubs, to the EI office when you apply for benefits. Apply as soon as you can. Don’t wait for your ROE. A temporary claim can be set up for you.

Under the collective agreement, the employer tops up my wages to 93 per cent of my pay for the first two weeks of my maternity, parental, or adoption leave. Will I get this during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:24:25+00:00

No. The employer does not have to pay this for any part of the two-week period that falls during a strike or lockout. Please note that Service Canada changed the waiting period to a one-week period as of January 1, 2017.

Under the collective agreement, the employer tops up my EI maternity, parental, or adoption leave benefits to 93 per cent of my pay for a number of weeks (15 weeks of maternity leave top-up and 35 weeks of parental/adoption leave top-up). If I am on leave and getting EI benefits before a strike or lockout, or go on leave during a strike or lockout, will I get the top-up from the employer?2017-09-10T01:24:50+00:00

During a strike or lockout you will not receive the top-up.

Would the top-up start up again after a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:25:16+00:00

Yes, as long as you are still getting EI maternity or parental (including adoption) benefits and the top-up provision still exists in the new collective agreement.

Do I have benefit coverage if I’m on maternity, parental, or adoption leave during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:25:44+00:00

The employer must allow employees on maternity, parental or adoption leave to continue to participate in their benefits for the period of their leave. Employees on these leaves must pay the premiums they normally pay. Your benefit coverage should remain the same as when you were at work.

What happens if my maternity, parental, or adoption leave ends, and I’m ready to return to work while a strike or lockout is still on?2017-09-10T01:26:07+00:00

You are considered on strike or locked out, and you should report for strike duties.

The collective agreement says I must serve 13 weeks to get leave without pay for maternity, parental, or adoption leave. Will a strike or lockout interrupt my eligibility for these leaves?2017-09-10T01:26:33+00:00

A strike or lockout does not interrupt the qualifying period for these leaves. To be eligible, your hire date must be at least 13 weeks before the expected date of birth or start of the parental or adoption leave.

If I’m on LTD before a strike or lockout, do my LTD benefits continue?2017-09-10T01:27:23+00:00

Yes, because LTD is an insured benefit and not paid directly by the employer.

If I’m on LTD when a strike or lockout starts, will I receive other benefits?2017-09-10T01:28:03+00:00

Under OPSEU policy, the union attempts to negotiate with the employer (prior to any work stoppage) to continue insured benefits if there is a strike or lockout. Our bargaining team is currently in discussions with the employer about this.

If I become ill or injured while on strike or locked out, will I be eligible for LTD benefits?2017-09-10T01:28:25+00:00

Under OPSEU policy, the union attempts to negotiate with the employer (prior to any work stoppage) to continue insured benefits if there is a strike or lockout. Our bargaining team is currently in discussions with the employer about this.

Would a strike or lockout interrupt my 130 day elimination period for LTD?2017-09-10T01:28:49+00:00

Yes, should LTD benefits be provided during a strike or lockout, none of the days on strike or lockout will apply to elimination period as none of those days will be considered “working days”. A strike or lockout will delay your eligibility.

While returning to work on a gradual basis, I’ve been receiving both rehabilitative employment earnings from the employer and LTD benefits. Will I continue to receive both during the strike?2017-09-10T01:29:12+00:00

During a strike or lockout the employer does not pay you and you do not work. Your LTD benefits continue to be paid by the insurer, without the usual reduction of 50 per cent of your rehabilitative employment earnings.

If I’m injured while on strike duty, can I make a WSIB claim?2017-09-10T01:30:08+00:00

No, you can’t.

If I’m getting WSIB benefits, will they continue during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:31:03+00:00

In many cases, yes, provided you continue to qualify medically and co-operate with WSIB-approved programs.

However, if WSIB discontinues or threatens to discontinue your benefits, contact the OPSEU Pensions and Benefits Department and ask to speak to the WSIB benefits counsellor.

If I have an approved WSIB claim and I’m in receipt of WSIB benefits, who pays me during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:31:31+00:00

WSIB will pay you directly.

Does the WSIB pay me the equivalent of my salary?2017-09-10T01:31:58+00:00

No. If the WSIB pays you directly, you will get WSIB benefits, which are 85 per cent of your net average earnings for any injury or illness that occurred after January 1, 1998, or 90 per cent for any injury or illness before that.

Would my strike pay affect the WSIB benefits that I get during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:32:29+00:00

No. Strike pay is not considered earnings by the WSIB. Therefore, it’s not offset from WSIB benefits. However, you’re in receipt of WSIB benefits because you’re deemed too ill or injured to be working. If the WSIB believes you have recovered enough to be working (i.e., because you have reported for strike duty), they may not continue your WSIB benefits.

Will I have benefit coverage if I’m on WSIB during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:32:55+00:00

You can keep employment benefits for one year from the date of your injury or until you return to work, whichever is sooner. You must pay your share of the premiums. Your benefit coverage remains the same as when you were at work.

What happens if I’m getting WSIB benefits and am ready to return to some type of work during a strike or lockout?2017-09-10T01:33:41+00:00

The employer will probably tell the WSIB that there is no appropriate placement for you due to the labour dispute. If this happens, inform the WSIB of your situation and your intention to continue following WSIB rules. You should continue to receive WSIB benefits as long as you co-operate with their requirements.

If WSIB discontinues your benefits, contact the OPSEU Pensions and Benefits Department and ask to speak to the WSIB benefits counsellor.

When is the bargaining process completed?2017-05-23T21:31:59+00:00

When the membership has voted to ratify a tentative agreement (reached through bargaining between the parties), the membership has voted to accept the employer’s offer. The CCBA does not give access for interest arbitration to the parties during bargaining. Both parties can consent to voluntary interest arbitration on any issue as
was done during the strikes of 1984, 1989 and 2006.

A new collective agreement is in place and bargaining is concluded until the next round.

Will partial load faculty receive strike pay?2017-05-23T21:30:54+00:00

Yes, if the partial load faculty is a member in good standing (has signed a union card) and participates in picketing and/or strike duties, they will receive strike pay at the rates mentioned above.

Will I receive strike pay?2017-05-23T21:30:16+00:00

All faculty who are OPSEU members in good standing (have signed a union card), and who participate in picketing, are eligible to receive strike pay. The amount of strike pay given by OPSEU follows:

During weeks one to three, each member is entitled to strike pay of $200 per week plus an additional $50 per week per dependant. The daily rate is $40 per day and $10 per day per dependant.

During the fourth week, strike pay increases and each member is entitled to $300 per week, or $60 per day. Dependant pay remains the same at $50 per week per dependant. A dependant is defined as:

  • a non-income-earning spouse (excluding a spouse on strike);
  • a child under 18 (or under 26 if attending school full-time) or a dependent child as defined by the collective agreement or
    benefit plan;
  • a disabled family member; or
  • an elderly family member who normally receives financial support from the striking member.

If both spouses are on strike, both may claim the dependants.

In addition to what OPSEU gives to members for strike pay, your local may also give a weekly top-up amount. To find out about local strike pay, contact your Local Executive.

Have faculty gained anything from striking?2017-05-23T21:27:35+00:00

Yes. Each time faculty have struck they have made important gains that have clearly improved working conditions and the quality of college education.

In 1984, after being legislated back to work and having outstanding issues referred to arbitration, faculty won the Workload Formula and the Standard Workload Form (SWF). Before the SWF full-time faculty could be assigned up to 26 teaching contact hours (TCH) each semester.

In the 1989 strike, the parties agreed to refer matters to arbitration and faculty defended against management’s attempt to remove the SWF, won more time for complementary functions, and won
comprehensive layoff protection language.

In the 2006 strike, again after agreeing to refer outstanding issues to arbitration, faculty made significant gains in salary that put us closer to the mid-range of our comparator groups (high school teachers and university faculty), as well as expanded benefits for partial load professors.

How long will a strike last?2017-05-23T21:25:54+00:00

The length of any strike is difficult to predict but in the past no strike by college faculty has lasted longer than three weeks.

How many times have college faculty been on strike?2017-05-23T21:25:20+00:00

In 50 years there have been only three faculty strikes, in 1984, 1989, and 2006.

What happens if there is a strike?2017-05-23T21:24:41+00:00

After a successful strike vote is taken, each local will begin strike preparations. In the event a strike is called, each local will enact their strike plan.

As a member on strike you stop working, support the picket line and other strike activity, and keep up on communications from the bargaining team. It will also be important to do your best to answer the questions that family, friends, students and others will direct to you about the cause of the strike, about the issues that are important to you, and about our desire to resolve it quickly and obtain a fair agreement.

When can a strike or lockout be called?2017-05-23T21:23:26+00:00

A strike can be called only after:

  1. there is no collective agreement in operation between the Council and the employee organization that represents the employee;
  2. a conciliation officer has made a report to the Minister of Labour under clause 7 (3) (b) to the effect that, despite his or her efforts, the terms of a collective agreement have not been settled and the Minister has informed the parties of the report by notice in writing in accordance with subsection 7 (4);
  3. the members of the bargaining unit have voted in favour of a strike by a vote by secret ballot conducted under the supervisionof and in the manner determined by the Ontario Labour Relations Board;
  4. after a vote in favour of a strike in accordance with clause (c), the employee organization that represents the employee gives
    the Council and the employer written notice of the strike and of the date on which the strike will commence at least five days before the commencement of the strike; and
  5. 16 days have elapsed after the date on the Minister’s notice referred to in clause (b). [CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 17 (1)]

It is important to note that a tentative agreement can still be reached at any point during this process.

It is also important to stress that the bargaining team never calls a strike lightly. It is only used when all other avenues for negotiation have failed and when the issues at stake are of sufficient importance.

Strike Deadline

Where there has been a ‘yes’ to a strike vote the union has the authority to set a strike deadline with 5 days’ notice to the employer. A strike deadline further increases pressure on the employer to reach a fair agreement.

Lockout

There has never been a lockout at Ontario colleges.

The Council can only lock out employees if,

a) there is no collective agreement in operation between the Council and the employee organization that represents the employees;

(b) a conciliation officer has made a report to the Minister of Labour under clause 7 (3) (b) to the effect that, despite his or her efforts, the terms of a collective agreement have not been settled and the Minister has informed the parties of the report by notice in writing in accordance with subsection 7 (4);

(c) the Council on behalf of all employers gives the employee organization that represents the employees written notice of the lock-out and of the date on which the lock-out will commence at
least five days before the commencement of the lock-out; and

d) 16 days have elapsed after the date on the Minister’s notice referred to in clause (b). [CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 21 (1)]

What happens if bargaining stalls?2017-05-23T21:02:01+00:00

Strike Vote

If the parties have not yet reached an agreement, the CAAT-A bargaining team can call for a strike vote. This can happen either before or after the CA expires. A vote ‘yes’ to strike does not
necessarily mean there will be a strike; however, a ‘yes’ vote increases the pressure on the employer to negotiate a fair settlement.

Conciliation

Conciliation is a process by which a trade union or an employer can ask the Ontario Ministry of Labour for help in resolving their differences so that they can reach a collective agreement. Either party may apply to the ministry. If parties are in negotiations, they must use the government’s conciliation services before they can get into a position to engage in a strike or lock-out. The conciliation officer informs the Ontario Minister of Labour that a collective agreement was unable to be effected. The Minister would then generally issue a notice informing the union and the employer that he or she “does not consider it advisable to appoint a conciliation board” [section 21(b) of the Labour Relations Act-LRA]. This notice is known colloquially as the “no board” report.

Final Offer Vote

The Council may, no earlier than 15 days before the expiry of a collective agreement, make a request in writing to the Ontario Labour Relations Board that a vote of the employees be taken to accept or reject the offer of the Council last received by the employee organization in respect of all matters remaining in dispute between the parties to the collective agreement. [CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 17 (2)]

Only one request may be made under subsection (2). [CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 17 (3)] The earliest it can happen is 15 days before the expiry of the CA, which would be September 15, 2017.

Where a request is made by the Council, a vote by secret ballot by the members of the bargaining unit shall be conducted under the supervision of and in the manner determined by the Ontario Labour Relations Board. [CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 17 (4)]

The union cannot call a formal offer vote (only a ratification or strike vote as noted above).

Imposed Terms and Conditions

The CCBA allows the employer to impose terms and conditions of work where the CA has expired, where there has been a “no board” report filed by the Conciliator to the Minister of Labour, and where a minimum of 16 days have passed since the filing of the report. The terms could include anything. This action bypasses the bargaining table.

How is an agreement reached?2017-05-23T20:56:10+00:00

At any time during the bargaining process the parties can reach a tentative agreement. If the team feels like there is a suitable agreement, they will consult with two groups – the local presidents
and the Bargaining Advisory Committee (BAC). All 24 local presidents are part of the first consultative group, and they will all have the ability to give feedback on the proposed contract. In addition, the 24 elected members of the BAC and eight appointed partial load members will be able to see the full language of any proposed agreement.

The bargaining team alone will make the final decision on any settlement and the team may accept or reject the feedback from the BAC or Presidents. If the CAAT-A bargaining team recommends
acceptance of a negotiated tentative agreement, a ratification vote is held for members to accept or decline the agreement. This vote can be at any time when requested by the CAAT-A bargaining team, and is scheduled by the Ontario Labour Relations Board.

What is the bargaining process?2017-05-23T20:54:16+00:00

The faculty and employer bargaining teams will agree on dates to bargain during the 90 day period. At the first meeting each side presents their bargaining package, with non-monetary items generally presented and discussed first. The teams continue to meet on agreedon dates until either an agreement is reached or bargaining breaks down.

During bargaining, agreed-on items are decided and taken off the table. Items with no agreement are further clarified, with evidence and data provided by both sides to substantiate their positions.
Throughout this process the faculty bargaining team is supported by an OPSEU negotiator, researcher, communications officer, and legal experts.

As bargaining progresses the faculty team will send out regular communications to members about the key issues on the table and the progress of negotiations. The CAAT-A Divisional Executive (DivEx) will also remain active throughout, and will help the bargaining team with member communications.

When does bargaining start?2017-05-23T20:51:45+00:00

Article 36-Duration of Collective Agreement and the Colleges Collective Bargaining Act (CCBA) dictates the timelines for bargaining. Either party to a collective agreement may give written notice to the other party, within the period of 90 days before the agreement expires, of its desire to negotiate with the view to the renewal, with or without modification, of the agreement then in operation [from CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 3 (2)].The current CA expires on September 30. As Monday, July 3 is a holiday, July 4 is the first day that formal bargaining may begin.

The parties shall meet within 30 days after the giving of the notice under section 3, and shall negotiate in good faith and make every reasonable effort to make a collective agreement or to renew the collective agreement, as the case requires. [from CCBA-2008, c. 15, s. 4.]

How are demands turned into contract language?2017-05-23T20:49:48+00:00

From April to June the bargaining team puts the demands passed at provincial demand setting into contract language. They do this by linking demands to the current Collective Agreement (CA) language and looking at language proposed in previous rounds of bargaining and contained in other faculty CAs. The team attempts to express the intent of demands in language that is clear, concise, and legally sound. Consultation with OPSEU legal counsel, the OPSEU research department and with the Canadian Association of University Teachers is an important part of this process.

What are our top demands?2017-05-23T20:48:15+00:00

Coming out of the provincial demand set meeting, the global demands were:

  1. Establish academic freedom and collegial governance.
  2. Improve the salary grids and wages to better our position in relation to our comparator groups and to account for inflation.
  3. Improve job security, complement, and layoff language.
  4. Improve workload factors to provide adequate time for academic work.
  5. Prevent the contracting out, privatization, or outsourcing of faculty work in whole or in part.
  6. Improve workload language to ensure that all faculty work is recorded on the SWF and that volunteerism is eliminated
  7. Strengthen intellectual property rights.
  8. Improved benefit coverage for all faculty.
  9. Improve language for replacement and consideration.
  10. Strengthen language to improve union representation of members working inside and outside the Province of Ontario.

Demands for counselors and librarians included a workload formula, workload and caseload limits for counsellors and creating a ratio of librarians and counsellors to number of students.

The top demands for partial load were for greater job security and parity in workload calculation between full time and partial load and to record and compensate total partial-load workload.

How are bargaining demands created?2017-05-23T20:42:45+00:00

Demands were generated through local demand set meetings held at all 24 faculty locals. Each local then sent their top ten demands to the bargaining team so they could be included in the provincial demand set book.

Each academic local sent delegates to the provincial demand set meeting, held on March 4 and 5, 2017, in Toronto. In the past, individual bargaining demands passed at one of the 24 local demandset meetings would be brought to the floor at the provincial meeting. However, this year the bargaining team took a different approach in order to focus our demands and ensure that all faculty groups are represented. The team aggregated all of the local demands received into 10 global demands, three demands that address the issues of librarians and counselors, and three demands that address the issues of partial load faculty.

Delegates at the provincial meeting then chose to move and debate the bargaining team demands. All 16 of these demands were passed by the delegates at the meeting. These demands are the initial demands set by the provincial CAAT-A bargaining team and may be altered as bargaining progresses.

What is a SWF?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

Article 11 (Workload) of the Collective Agreement states that “Each teacher shall have a workload that adheres to the provisions of this Article.” (11.01A)

The Standard Workload Form (SWF) is a workload contract between you and the college and is used to calculate each teacher’s workload for a specified period of time.

Article 11 of the Collective Agreement explains the formula and its application in detail. You will find a copy of the form in Appendix I of the Collective Agreement.

Download Standard Workload Form - OPSEU Local 558Download the Standard Workload Form (PDF)

Who gets a SWF?2013-11-21T01:04:51+00:00

Only full-time professors are issued SWFs. Full-time counsellors and librarians who are assigned teaching hours receive letters detailing how their teaching hours are calculated.

All workloads should adhere to the provisions of Article 11 [11.01 A]. Sessional, partial-load and part time faculty are paid for each teaching hour worked.

What is The SWF Process?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

Article 11.2   A 1

(a) Prior to the establishment of a total workload for any teacher the supervisor shall discuss the proposed workload with the teacher and complete the SWF, attached as Appendix I, to be provided by the The supervisor shall give a copy to the teacher not later than six weeks prior to the beginning of the period covered by the timetable excluding holidays and vacations. It is recognized that if the SWF is subsequently revised by the College, it will not be done without prior consultation with the teacher.

(b) The College may, where a change in circumstances requires it, amend assignments provided to a teacher after the original assignment, subject to the teacher’s right to refer any matter to the College Workload Monitoring Group (WMG) referred to in 11.02 B 1 and if necessary, the Workload Resolution Arbitrator (WRA) referred to in 11.02 E 1 and appointed under 11.02 F 1.

11.02 A 2
The SWF shall include all details of the total workload including teaching contact hours, accumulated contact days, accumulated teaching contact hours, number of sections, type and number of preparations, type of evaluation/feedback required by the curriculum, class size, attributed hours, contact days, language of instruction and complementary functions.

11.02 A 3
Following receipt of the SWF, the teacher shall indicate in writing on the SWF whether in agreement with the total workload. If not in agreement the teacher and the supervisor may add such other comments as is considered appropriate and may indicate in writing that the workload should be reviewed by the College WMG.

11.02 A 4
In the event that the teacher is not in agreement with the total workload and wishes it to be reviewed by the WMG, the teacher must so indicate in writing to the supervisor within five working days following the date of receipt of the SWF. The completed SWF will be forwarded by the supervisor to the WMG within three working days from date of receipt from the teacher with a copy to be given to the teacher.

Absent such indication, the teacher shall be considered to be in agreement with the total workload.

11.02 A 5
The timetable shall set out the schedule and location of assigned workload hours reported on the SWF, on a Timetable Form to be provided by the College, and a copy shall be given to the teacher no less than two weeks prior to the beginning of the period covered by the timetable, which shall be the same period as that covered by the SWF.

11.2 A 6
(a) In the event of any difference arising from the interpretation, application, administration or alleged contravention of 01, 11.02, or 11.09, a teacher shall discuss such difference as a complaint with the teacher’s immediate supervisor.

The discussion shall take place within 14 days after the circumstances giving rise to the complaint have occurred or have come or ought reasonably to have come to the attention of the teacher in order to give the immediate supervisor an opportunity of adjusting the complaint. The discussion shall be between the teacher and the immediate supervisor unless mutually agreed to have other persons in attendance. The immediate supervisor’s response to the complaint shall be given within seven days after discussion with the teacher.

Failing settlement of such a complaint, a teacher may refer the  complaint, in writing, to the WMG within seven days of receipt of the immediate supervisor’s reply. The complaint shall then follow the procedures outlined in 11.02 B through 11.02 F.

(b) Grievances arising with respect to Article 11, Workload, other than 11.01, 11.02 and 11.09 shall be handled in accordance with the grievance procedure set out in Article 32, Grievance and Arbitration Procedures.

How is a SWF calculated?2015-09-09T19:53:35+00:00

Your workload is calculated according to the factors in Article 11:

11.01 A
Each teacher shall have a workload that adheres to the provisions of this Article.

11.01 B1
Total workload assigned and attributed by the College to a teacher shall not exceed 44 hours in any week for up to 36 weeks in which there are teaching contact hours for teachers in post-secondary programs and for up to 38 weeks in which there are teaching contact hours in the case of teachers not in post-secondary programs.

The balance of the academic year shall be reserved for complementary functions and professional development.

Workload factors to be considered are:

(i)            teaching contact hours
(ii)           attributed hours for preparation
(iii)          attributed hours for evaluation and feedback
(iv)         attributed hours for complementary functions

11.01 B 2
A “teaching contact hour” is a College scheduled teaching hour assigned to the teacher by the College.

11.01 C
Each teaching contact hour shall be assigned as a 50 minute block plus a break of up to ten minutes.

The voluntary extension of the teaching contact hour beyond 50 minutes by the teacher and any student(s) by not taking breaks or by re-arranging breaks or by the teacher staying after the period to consult with any student(s) shall not  constitute an additional teaching contact hour.

When are SWFs issued?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

11.02 A 1 (a)
Prior to the establishment of a total workload for any teacher the supervisor shall discuss the proposed workload with the teacher and complete the SWF, attached as Appendix I, to be provided by the The supervisor shall give a copy to the teacher not later than six weeks prior to the beginning of the period covered by the timetable excluding holidays and vacations. It is recognized that if the SWF is subsequently revised by the College, it will not be done without prior consultation with the teacher.

11.02 A 1 (b)
The College may, where a change in circumstances requires it, amend assignments provided to a teacher after the original assignment, subject to the teacher’s right to refer any matter to the College Workload Monitoring Group (WMG) referred to in 11.02 B 1 and if necessary, the Workload Resolution Arbitrator (WRA) referred to in 11.02 E 1 and appointed under 11.02 F 1.

How do I check my SWF?2015-09-09T20:14:22+00:00

To determine if your current workload is truly reflected on your SWF, take a careful look at your latest SWF and consider the following questions.

a) Examine the section dealing with assigned teaching hours.

  • Does it reflect the number of courses and sections you are actually teaching?
  • Does the number of students listed under class size reflect the number of students actually registered in your class?
  • Is there anything unusual about your workload that might merit/require special consideration under Article 11.01 G 2 which deals with “atypical circumstances”?

b) Examine the section dealing with complementary functions.

c) Does it reflect all your additional work, including regularly scheduled meetings and committees?

If you answered “no” to any of these questions and want some help in recalculating your SWF, contact us.

Where can I find more information about SWFs?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

The clauses in the pages of your Collective Agreement entitled ‘Article 11: Workload’, cover all aspects of your workload.

Your workload is itemized on the Standard Workload Form (SWF). This complex article should be studied carefully. If you have difficulty interpreting this article, please contact us.

Refer to the Collective Agreement (PDF) for full details.

How much time do I have to review my SWF?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

You have three (3) working days from the date of receipt of your SWF to examine, sign, and submit it to your supervisor.

You may discuss your SWF with anyone you choose, including your colleagues, stewards, or members of the Workload Monitoring Group.

This type of discussion can be particularly useful in determining if you are being treated equitably in comparison to others in your work area.

What happens if I don’t sign my SWF?2013-11-21T00:55:47+00:00

If you do not sign your SWF within the three (3) day period, it is assumed you are in agreement with your assigned workload. It will only go the Workload Monitoring Group if you check the box labelled: “Proposed Workload Referred to the Workload Monitoring Group” [11.02 A 4] or if a member of the CWMG requests it.

It’s a good idea to send all your SWFs to the CWMG “for review.” Your Union reps may spot anomalies that you may have overlooked.

What should I do if I have signed my SWF but during the semester find that the SWF does not adequately reflect my workload?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

Discuss the SWF with your supervisor. If you present your arguments clearly, you may be able to convince your supervisor to make changes

[11.02A 6 (a)].

The discussion should take place within 14 days of your becoming aware of the unacceptable circumstances.

(The “circumstances” could be the SWF you have received or a change in your workload such that your SWF no longer reflects your actual workload.) Your supervisor must provide a response to your complaint within 7 days of your discussion.

If your supervisor does not settle the matter to your satisfaction and issue a new SWF containing the appropriate changes, refer the unsatisfactory SWF to the Workload Monitoring Group, in writing, within 7 days of your supervisor’s response.

What should I do if I disagree with my workload assignment?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

Discuss any disagreement with your Chairperson and if there is no resolution at that stage, then sign your SWF, making appropriate comments in the space provided: “Faculty Member’s Comments”, and placing a check mark in the box labelled “Proposed Workload Referred to the Workload Monitoring Group”

[11.02 A 3 & 4]. (If you need more space for comments, attach a separate sheet.)

Your steward can assist you with the wording. Be brief. Submit this document to your supervisor within 3 working days of receipt of the SWF and immediately fax a copy to the local Union office at 416-694-2176.

You may want to download the Flow Chart for Workload Resolution for easy reference. This flow chart will explain the steps required to resolve your workload problem quickly and efficiently.

Do I have to do my work on campus?2013-11-21T00:52:30+00:00

No. As long as you conduct your classes and meet appropriate deadlines, you decide where you will work [11.01 G 1].

What do I do during my non-teaching periods?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

These periods are reserved for complementary functions and professional development

[11.01 B 1].

You and your supervisor will agree on the activities.

The agreement is not recorded in writing or scheduled, “subject to the requirement to meet appropriate deadlines established by the College.” [11.01G1].

Anything you do during this time is by mutual consent [11.08].

Can I be asked to have office hours?2013-11-21T00:51:10+00:00

Office hours are not obligatory unless they appear on your SWF as an additional complementary function on an hour-for-hour basis.

They are not part of the minimum six complementary hours.

What are complementary functions?2013-11-21T00:50:26+00:00

Each full-time teacher is given a minimum of six (6) hours for routine out-of-class assistance to individual students and normal administrative tasks.

You decide how and where you will use this time [11.01 F].

The college may assign any other functions appropriate to the professional role of the teacher.

These can include attending regular meetings, working on committees, doing curriculum development, or performing coordinating duties, or even specialized tasks like setting up a lab or working with special-needs students.

If your supervisor asks you to do something, it shall be recorded on your SWF.

What happens after I check off the box marked “Proposed Workload Referred to the College Workload Monitoring Group”?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

Your SWF will be sent to the College Workload Monitoring Group. The CWMG will meet “where feasible” within one (1) week of the receipt of your complaint to discuss your SWF

[11.02 D 1].

You may back up your complaint with a written argument of your position and/or the CWMG may call upon you to present your position in person.

When the CWMG reaches an agreement, its decision is binding [11.02D 5].

What happens if the Workload Monitoring Group can’t reach an agreement?2013-11-21T00:48:47+00:00

If the CWMG can’t settle the matter, you will be contacted.

You may then refer your SWF to the Workload Resolution Arbitrator [11.02 E 1]. A meeting will be set up within two (2) weeks of the referral [11.01 F 5], and the WRA has ten (10) working days to issue a written award [11.01 F 6].

In reality, a backlog of referrals and a lack of available arbitrators may result in a delay in the hearing of your case. The WRA’s decision is final [11.01 F 8].

What are my overtime rights?2013-11-21T00:47:49+00:00
  • Overtime may exceed no more than one TCH / week; or three (3) total workload hours / week. In other words, you may not be assigned more than 47 hours total workload / week (i.e. 44 hours maximum + 3 hours maximum overtime = 47 hours).
  • Overtime is voluntary, not obligatory. [11.01J 1
  •  The college cannot assign overtime to probationary professors under any circumstances.

The minimum limits to your workload are:

  • 4 hours for routine out-of-class assistance to individual students and 2 hours for normal administrative tasks. These two limits are minimums; if your workload requires more than this minimum amount, ask for more. [11.01 F]
  • 12 hours between end of one work day and start of next [11.01L 3], wherever possible
  • 10 days of professional development, including at least five uninterrupted days. These PD days must fit in the 10-month academic year, along with your teaching workload.
I really don’t want any overtime. What can I do?2013-11-21T00:46:21+00:00

Article 11.01J1 indicates that all overtime work “shall be voluntary.”

Therefore, if you do not wish to work any overtime, you must provide the chair with a viable reason, as article 11.01 J3 makes reference to the fact that agreement for overtime shall not be unreasonably withheld.

What are the various limits to my workload?2013-11-21T00:45:40+00:00

The maximum limits to your workload are:

  • 10-month academic year [11.03]
  • 12 consecutive months of teaching in a continuous-intake program, followed by at least one month’s vacation [15]
  • 36 teaching weeks / academic year for post-secondary faculty [11.01 B 1]
  • 38 teaching weeks / academic year for non-post-secondary faculty [11.01 B 1]
  • 18 TCH (Teaching Contact Hours) / week for post-secondary faculty (648 TCH / academic year) [11.01 I]
  • 20 TCH / week for non-post-secondary faculty (760 TCH / Academic year) [11.01 I]
  • 180 contact days / academic year (10 months) for post-secondary faculty [11.01 K 1]
  • 190 contact days / academic year (10 months) for non-post-secondary faculty [11.01 K 1]
  • 44 hours / week for total workload [11.01 B1]
  • 8 hour teaching day [11.01 L 1]
What should I do if my attributed hours for evaluation/meetings do not reflect the actual amount of time I spend on these activities?2013-11-21T00:44:21+00:00

Talk to your colleagues – they may have a similar problem.

Talk to your supervisor about the extra work and request additional time on your SWF or a reduction of your workload. If your supervisor does not agree, log your workload (such as marking and meetings) for the semester.

Write down how much time you actually spend marking, performing committee work, and so on.

Later in the same semester or the following semester, you will have actual figures with which to argue your case before your supervisor and possibly before the Workload Monitoring Group.

What is the factor if I do a combination of evaluation types?2013-11-21T00:43:07+00:00

The Collective Agreement allows for mixed evaluation types.

When you discuss this with your supervisor, make sure that the mixed factor gives you enough time to do all the marking.

For example, if you do essay marking and decide to add on some Scantron tests without reducing the amount of essay marking, do not accept a mixed evaluation type [11.01 E 2 (iv)].

How do I determine the evaluation factor?2013-11-21T00:42:18+00:00

Hours for evaluation and feedback are based on the method of evaluation being used. Three types are identified in the workload formula, but it is also possible to have a blended evaluation factor if more than one type is used.

“Essay or project” (Ratio: 1:0.030 per student)
“Essay or project” Involves marking essays, essay-type assignments or tests, projects, or student performance based on behavioral assessments [11.01 E 2 (i)]. Students’ performance based on behavioral assessment includes such techniques as presentations in class which the professor then further assesses after the class.

“Routine or assisted” (Ratio: 1:0.015 per student)
Involves the grading of short answer tests or the use of mechanical marking assistance or marking assistants [11.01 E 2 (ii)].

“In-process” (Ratio: 1:0.0092 per student)
Means that the evaluation is performed entirely within the teaching contact hour [11.01 E 2 (iii)].

How do I calculate the attributed hours for evaluation and feedback?2013-11-21T00:39:20+00:00

Multiply the assigned teaching contact hours by the class size and the evaluation factor [11.01 E 1].

How do I determine the preparation factor?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

Each course you teach is classified according to your experience in teaching it, whether it is an additional section of the course you are teaching concurrently, or whether it is a continuous-intake program.

“New” – 1:1.1
A “New” course is the first section of a course you have never taught before, or are teaching for the first time since a major revision.

“Established A” – 1:0.85
An “Established A” course is the first section of a course you have taught before, but not in the previous three years.

“Established B” – 1:0.60
An “Established B” course is the first section of a course you have taught within the last three years.

“Repeat A” – 1:0.45
A “Repeat A” course is any of the subsequent sections of a course you are teaching in the same semester, taught to students in a different year or in a different program. If the students in your section are not all from the same year and same program, Repeat A is to be used.

“Repeat B” – 1:0.35
A “Repeat B” course is any of the subsequent sections of a course you are teaching in the same semester, taught to students in the same year and program.

“Special A” and “Special B”
“Special A” and “Special B” courses are continuous-intake courses or courses in which the objectives describe the students’ application of knowledge in actual work settings. See the Collective Agreement for the ratios

[11.01 D 3 (vii) and (viii)].
How do I calculate attributed preparation time?2013-11-21T00:34:57+00:00

Multiply your assigned teaching contact hours by the preparation factor [11.01 D 1 and 11.01 D 3 (i) to (ix)].

How do I calculate teaching contact hours?2013-11-21T00:31:24+00:00

Your SWF should accurately reflect your teaching load.

  • Each course and section should be listed separately, and you should have no more than four (4) different course preparations or six (6) different sections in a given week.
  • Your supervisor must ask for your consent before assigning you to do any work in excess of these limits [11.01 D 2].
  • The maximum contact hours per week for a teacher in a post-secondary program is eighteen (18).
  • For a teacher not in a post-secondary program, twenty (20) is the limit [11.01 I].
Who sits on the CWMG?2013-11-21T00:20:55+00:00

The College Workload Monitoring Group consists of eight (8) members, four appointed by the College and four by the Union Local.

Union members on the CWMG are:

Debra Warren – Co-Chair, Alan Reid, Chris Brown and Jacques O’Sullivan.

A quorum at CWMG meetings is 4, 6, or 8 members, with equal representation from both the college and the Union Local. Alternative arrangements may be made at the local level upon agreement of the Union Local and the college.

What are the functions of the CWMG?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

The functions of the CWMG include:

  • reviewing workload assignments in general at the college and resolving apparent inequitable assignments;
  •  reviewing specific disputes pursuant to 11.02 A 4 and/or 11.02 A 6 (a) and where possible resolving such disputes;
  • making recommendations to the college on the operation of workload assignments at the college;
  • reviewing individual workload assignments where requested by the teacher or the Union Local and, where possible, resolving the disputes;
  • making recommendations to the college and Union Local committees appointed under Article 7, Union College Committee, as to amendments or additions to the provisions governing workload assignments at the college for local negotiation in accordance with 11.02 G in order to address particular workload needs at the college.

Where feasible, the CWMG meets once weekly.

What is the Workload Resolution Procedure?2013-11-21T00:18:04+00:00

Below is the resolution procedure for Article 11 (Workload), with deadlines clearly indicated.

You may want to download the Flow Chart for Workload Resolution [PDF] for easy reference. This flow chart will explain the steps required to correct your workload problem speedily and efficiently.

If you don’t agree with any aspect of your assigned workload (as set out on your SWF), check the middle box and give it back to your chair within three days of receiving it. You should also forward a copy to the Union office. The chair has to forward your SWF to the CWMG within three days.

The CWMG must meet to address the issue within seven days. If the workload is resolved, you and the chair are both notified. The decision reached by the CWMG is only binding for the period of the SWF. If you have the same problem the following semester or following year, you have to start again.

If the CWMG fails to reach a resolution regarding your SWF, you and your chair will also be notified. It is then up to you to forward your SWF to Workload Resolution Arbitration (WRA) within seven days of your notice from the CWMG. You can also forward your SWF to WRA if the CWMG fails to act on your SWF for more than three weeks.

WRA will hold a hearing regarding your SWF within 2 weeks, then render an award within 10 working days of the hearing. Your award is binding for 1 year from the start of your SWF.

What is a workload grievance?2016-12-11T02:48:06+00:00

Workload grievances cover any complaint about your workload as set out on your SWF (Standard Workload Form). They arise from Article 11.01 and 11.02.

When you receive your SWF, check it over very carefully. If you don’t agree with any aspect of your assigned workload (the SWF), check the middle box and give it back to your chairperson within three days. You should also forward a copy to the Union office. Your complaint will be referred to the College Workload Monitoring Group (CWMG).

Advocating for your own best working conditions – and, therefore, your students’ best learning conditions – is a simple matter of checking the right boxes and sending your SWF off to CWMG.

Although it is often difficult to stand up and demand that your work be scheduled and compensated fairly, the process itself is relatively straightforward.

Please contact us for information and guidance.