Message from the President of the UPEIFA

Dear Faculty Association Colleagues,

I am very excited to be your President for the coming year during what is definitely an exciting and dynamic time to be a faculty member at UPEI. The campus is seeing many changes including our first Collective Agreement (CA) which affects us collectively and individually. This is a 5-year agreement retroactive to July 1, 2000 and expiring June 30, 2005. Under this new agreement, we have responsibilities as an Association and as members that I see falling in the areas of Education, Awareness and Participation.

Education: Each of us must become familiar with the new Collective Agreement. It is the rule book that governs our employment. It not only obligates the employer but each of us as well to specific responsibilities. If you have not yet received your copy (red book), please contact the Human Resources office. The employer is obligated by the agreement to provide a hard copy to each member and to post it on the Human Resources website. For the FA's part, we will begin to facilitate this process either through newsletters or workshops over the next while. Note, though, that the onus is on the member to learn the rules. This is especially important for those members who are Department Chairs and who are additionally responsible for the employment of others.

Awareness: As a labour union, our strength lies in the Collective Agreement. If allowed to go unchecked, practices that are inconsistent with it will only lead to its weakening over time. Each of us, therefore, must assume an on-going proactive role in ensuring that the agreement is properly implemented for each of our individual cases and in cases where we are responsible for the employment of other members. Of course, there will be questions of interpretation and disagreement during the implementation of the CA for the first time. Flexibility, communication and good faith will be vital to ensure that the intent of the agreement is honoured. Members should contact the Faculty Association should they have questions regarding the interpretation or implementation of the agreement.

Participation: The CA must be reflective of and responsive to the needs of the Faculty Association membership. Accordingly, your active participation in its implementation, maintenance and ongoing development is critical. FA Newsletter # 6 (issued in March and now on the UPEIFA website at http://www.upeifa.org) presents a number of committees that are required to make the agreement work. Some of the positions mentioned are filled but there is always room for more. Over the next short while, the Executive will be finalizing details with respect to these committees. If you have a particular interest, please consider helping out and letting us know.

As I see it, we have two major tasks to consider over the next year.

First, it will be important to fine tune the governance model by which the Faculty Association operates. For many of the reasons described above, we need to be responsive to the membership and the CA to ensure that it continues to serve us well. This will require an active structure of appropriate committees to keep on top of things and to make appropriate recommendations to the Executive and membership.

Second, believe it or not, we will be back at the bargaining table before we know it. I expect that we will find ourselves there late in the spring of 2005 but our preparations will necessarily begin much sooner than that, in fact, almostimmediately. I want to ensure that the priorities and directions we take in our second bargaining process are built on the input and priorities of the members. In my view, we cannot do this without first building on Education, Awareness and Particpation.

So, first we put our house in order and then we prepare for the next round of

negotiations.

If you have any questions or concerns at all at this point please fell free to contact me

at 566-0495 or [email protected]

In closing, I would like to introduce the 2004-2005 Executive and other officers. We are:

President: Dr. Wayne Peters
Engineering, 566-0495, [email protected]

Vice-President: Dr. David Seeler
Companion Animals, 566-0886, [email protected]

Past-President: Dr. Lawrence Hale
Biology, 566-0551, [email protected]

Secretary/Treasurer: Dr. J. Trenton McClure
Health Management, 566-0717, [email protected]

Member-at-large: Dr. Susan Dohoo
Biomedical Sciences, 566-0546, [email protected]

Member-at-large: Dr. David Groman
Aquatic Diagnostic Service, 566-0830, [email protected]

Member-at-large: Ms. Norine Hanus
Robertson Library, 566-0479, [email protected]

Member-at-large: Dr. Gordon MacDonald
Mathematics and Statistics, 628-4329, [email protected]

Grievance Officer: Dr. Lawrence Hale
Biology, 566-0551, [email protected]

Office Manager: Ms. Susan Gallant
566-0438, [email protected]

Check out the UPEIFA website at http://www.upeifa.org. It will be updated over the next couple of days.

Sincerely,Wayne Peters,
UPEI Faculty Association President