Official Website for OPSEU Local 415

OPSEU Autism Rally-Mar.22

Good morning,

Please find attached here a poster for the upcoming OPSEU “Rally for Children & Families who need quality public Autism Services at CHEO” being held on Friday March 22, 2019 at 3500 Fallowfield Road (outside Lisa MacLeod’s office) from 11:00am to 1:00pm.  Thank you.

 

In solidarity,

Jennifer Moore

ODLC Administration

 

The Ottawa and District Labour Council is now on Twitter, Facebook and Flickr.  Check us out at www.twitter.com/ottawalabour  Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ottawalabour  See us on Flickr at www.flickr.com/ottawalabour

 

Student complaint policy SA:03 update

After representing a number of members at student complaint meetings in the fall, I e-mailed the college president in October, 2018 asking her to look into revamping the student complaint directive to incorporate some type of meaningful consequence for students bringing forward false complaints and allegations. I was assured that student services and human resources were “reviewing the relevant policies”.

I’ve also has the opportunity to meet with the ombudsman, George E. Cole, to discuss possible changes to the existing policy. I shared my experiences in representing faculty at several student complaint meetings involving human resources, chairs, and deans. In every instance, the existing policy was not followed, yet the complaints were permitted to proceed. Even more troubling, was the fact that the majority of the complaints were found to have no merit, or were completely fictitious. In a least one case, the students admitted to lying because they were upset with the faculty member.

The current policy needs a mechanism by which students who make false allegations against faculty are subject to penalty. (see SA: 07 Student Conduct) However, in order for any new policy to be effective, the policy needs to be followed in the first place. I’m hopeful that the college will take the suggestions of the union and the ombudsman’s office seriously, and produce a policy that protects faculty while maintaining students’ rights.

 

I’ll provide more information when it becomes available.

 

JP Lamarche

Chief Steward, Local 415

Today’s Election

Hello sisters and brothers

I would like to thank all of the members for participating in today’s election.  With 360 ballots cast, your new 2nd Vice President is Annette Bouzi.

Thank you sisters and brothers for your patience today and Diane Brule office administrator for all of her assistance.

 

In solidarity,

 

Nelson Ross Laguna

Staff Representative

Ontario Public Service Employees Union

Ottawa, On

18447651416 ext 5445

 

Outsourcing of Our Work to Private Colleges

A very serious situation which has the potential to affect our jobs and retirement benefits is currently underway in our college system which requires the need for both DivEx and the Local to provide strong leadership now in anticipation of rocky times ahead with the Ford government.

Currently 6 colleges contract out, to private colleges, the delivery of public college credentials for international students: Lambton, St. Clair, Northern, Cambrian, St. Lawrence and Canadore. After a Divisional lobbying campaign and damning external reports about the risks such arrangements pose, the previous Liberal government announced that it would be phased out. However, it is our understanding that the Ford government has indicated that the outsourcing will now be allowed to continue. Consequently, with DivEx coordination, on February 6, two locals – Canadore and St. Lawrence – have filed OLRB applications “Regarding Employee Status”, essentially making the claim that the workers (support and faculty) at the private colleges belong to our bargaining units because they are delivering our programs.

Combined with teacher-less classes and the Multi-College Collaboration Model, the continued contracting out of faculty work to private colleges or third-party contractors, it is very clear that the Ford government has a very different way of doing business in the province of Ontario. 

The Local will keep you appraised of any new information regarding these important matters and I would ask that you alert the Local if you become aware of any of your work being contracted out so that we can act to protect your work and retirement benefits, now and into the future.

Pat Kennedy, President

OPSEU Local 415

By-Election for Second Vice President – OPSEU Local 415 – Personal Biographies of Nominees

As previously communicated, there will be a by-election for the Second Vice President of OPSEU Local 415 at all three campuses. In order to better acquaint you with each of the nominees, they were asked to provide personal biographies to be sent out to all full-time and partial-load faculty.

The attachment contains the personal biographies of the two nominees.

•             Annette Bouzi

•             Tracy Henderson

 The by-election will be held as follows on Wednesday March 13, 2019:

 – Ottawa Campus: Union Faculty Office, C215B, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

 – Pembroke Campus: Room 122, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

 – Perth Campus: Room 108, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (Note: Room change)

All full-time and partial-load faculty who are members of the union are eligible to vote. We always welcome new members into OPSEU and membership forms will be available if you are not already a member and wish to sign up.

 —

OPSEU Local 415 Communications Officer

Mon., March 11 Local 415 Wellness Table in J-link on Woodroffe campus

Hello,

This Monday, March 11, between 9:30-2:30 in the J-link on the Woodroffe campus, please take a few minutes to stop at the Local 415 Wellness table. Stewards will be at the table to answer your questions and provide you with some useful handouts about wellness and counsellor services. There will be snacks as well.

Hope to talk to you in person on Monday!

Judy Puritt

Local Mobilizing Team (LMT) Chair

CAAT Pension Plan funded status grows to 120% with benefit security reserves of $2.6 billion

The CAAT Pension Plan stands 120% funded on a going-concern basis, with a funding reserve of $2.6 billion, based on its latest actuarial valuation as at January 1, 2019. This is an improvement over last year’s valuation that showed the Plan 118% funded with a funding reserve of $2.3 billion.

You may read the full article here: https://www.caatpension.on.ca/en/about-us/valuation-2019

David Haley, 1st VP OPSEU Local 415

CAAT Pension Plan Trustee

Pat Kennedy, President OPSEU Local 415

CAAT Pension Plan Sponsor

Reminder – OPSEU Local 415 2nd VP Election March 13, 2019 (Note Perth Campus Room Change)

Sisters and brothers,

Local 415 will be conducting an election for the 2nd Vice Presidents position. As you may recall the local held a by-election on December 5th, however I was unable to determine a successful candidate in the election due to inaccuracies on the voters list provided to the Union by the Employer. Then, because of adverse weather conditions, the rescheduled election of February 13, 2019 was cancelled.

Due to these unfortunate events, the local will be conducting another election on March 13th, 2019.

In order to prevent the same issue of inaccurate lists I will be confirming members who are partial load or who are unsure of their status at the polling station. If you are partial load or believe you are partial load at the time of the vote in order to confirm you are in good standing with the local, you will be required to provide your pay statement to show Union dues deductions as well as hours worked. Your pay statement will need to show your name and employee number as well. If you wish to blackout other areas, you may. If you are partial load or believe you are partial load and you do not provide a pay statement, I will have to segregate your ballot and then confirm your status afterwards which may take days or weeks.

The process will be as usual for all other members who require to be a signed member of the Union in order to vote. If you have not signed a union membership card you can do so at the polling station.

The two candidates for the election are:

  • Annette Bouzi
  • Tracy Henderson

 The by-election will be held as follows on Wednesday March 13, 2019:

 – Ottawa Campus: Union Faculty Office, C215B, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

 – Pembroke Campus: Room 122, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

 – Perth Campus: Room 108, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (Room change)

All full-time and partial-load faculty who are members of the union are eligible to vote.

In solidarity

Nelson Ross Laguna

OPSEU Region 4 Rep and

Electoral Officer for Local 415

 

Security breach follow-up

The Local has filed a union grievance against the college for a failure to abide by the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act in relation to the recent security breach. This grievance was filed to protect members whose personal information and data might have been compromised by the phishing attack. The grievance seeks the production of all documentation disclosing which employees have been affected, and seeks damages for any affected employees.

For those members who have already been contacted by the college confirming a breach, we suggest that you contact the Local immediately to review your status and next steps to have the college pay you the damages or the costs of mitigating or avoiding incurring damages arising from the disclosure or unauthorized access.  This includes damages that may be discovered in the future and are caused by the breach but are not yet known or have not yet occurred.

Pat Kennedy, President
OPSEU Local 415

Update of the Board of Governors (BOG) meeting 3 February 25, 2019

I attended this meeting remotely from home as I had just had knee surgery and was unable to make the meeting in person.  Here is my report to you the faculty.

The meeting started with Celebrating Student Success and recognizing the students from the school of Business Marketing team who competed in the Ontario College Marketing Competition. The Team Algonquin finished in second place provincially – our best finish in the 40-year history of the event!

The following are my summaries for each item presented.

Workday Project Update:

A general update regarding the Workday initiative was covered by Doug Wotherspoon.  This was the last update to be presented to the BOG.  I was very disappointed as the “phishing” incident was played down and only mentioned once.  One would think after causing three weeks of disruption and preventing many employees from properly performing their job the “phishing incident” would have been at the top of the presentation. I found that it was quickly mentioned almost as an irrelevant point.  This prompted me to ask for a confirmation that no personal information to faculty and staff had been released during the incident.  The president responded with the remediation that occurred such as password changes for all, restoration of affected computers but no specific response to the actual question.  I followed up with a question to Doug Wotherspoon regarding if we had in place a multiple-factor authentication process to access account information.  His answer appeared to indicate that this was going to be implemented as part of the remediation process. I found it interesting that an event, which allowed the infiltration of principle college system and required the disruption of many of the college operational system such as VPN, e-mail, Workday, was played down at a Board of Governor meeting.

Solar Photovoltaic Project Update:

This project as you know was spearheaded as part of a government green gas reduction initiative and funding to the amount of 6.8 million dollars.  The installation of solar panels on the roof of the Ottawa campus are to be used to replace the use green gas producing fuels for such things as air based heating, hot water production and reducing  electrical use from the grid. The project has plenty of merit and I feel was a great direction for the college to embark on back in June of 2018.  The timeline to submit a proposal and ensure the funding was short.  Apparently, this caused the engineering company to fast track their forecasted estimate of total cost of the job.  A significant error was in the area of the electrical upgrades required to utilize the air based heating portion of the project.  A solution was proposed to use the hot water generated from the panels to supply the hot water requirements on campus.  This unfortunately has cause a 1.2 million dollar shortfall on the project that is now on the college’s books.  I personally felt that if the engineering company made the error they should at least be partially responsible for the additional cost and therefore voted against the motion for the college to cover the 1.2 million dollar short fall.  Unfortunately, aside from one other governor voting against this motion, the motion was moved.

2019-2021 Business Plan & 2019-2020 Annual Budget:

The Business plan for 2019 to 2021 were presented and the 2019-2020 budget were presented by each VP.  The sound on the remote system was disconnected at that time and therefore I was unable to hear the presentation or ask questions.

I reviewed the plan and budget and did not find any items of concern.  The plan continues to follow the Strategic Plan and focus on Student Satisfaction, Co-op and Employee engagement.  The Learner Driven plan and focus is a personal concern.  How is this style of course and program management going to fit with the existing programs and courses at Algonquin?  As well, is today’s student population able to create their own learning path?  The International strategic refresh requires more detail. The most positive piece of the plan is the replacement proposal for the Student Information System or GeneSIS. Considering that over the last decade 20 out of the 24 Ontario Colleges have replaced their system there will be a lot of information regarding the system options on the market.  This will not be a cheap fix or easy fix

The Budget for the upcoming year has challenges of its own.  The 10% mandated fee decrease and ancillary fee decrease will cause some considerable revenue shortfalls. The program tuition costs for domestic and international students have been adjusted to reflect these issues. Domestic students will see a 10% decrease yet this shortfall will be compensated with an increase to international student. I had a concern on whether this would affect the international student numbers in a negative way.  The president reassured me that similar increases were going to take place across the board with the other Ontario Colleges.  My belief is that if raising prices brings down the numbers of international students, this will only increase the college shortfall.  As you know the international student intake has been the redeeming feature for the college over the last few years. Only time will tell if this comes back to bite us. . It was also mentioned that 51 full time positions were on the budget for next year 31 of them for faculty.  It was not clarified if this included the replacement position of the voluntary retirement incentive.

There are two physical space major Strategic Investment projects starting.  The pedestrian bridge to the LRT station and the SA new athletic and Recreation Complex.  There was no mention of increasing the number of classroom space available.

Third Quarter 2018-2019 Financial Projection

The sound returned to the remote system and I was able to rejoin in the discussions and presentations.

A significant positive was the enrollment increased by 7.0% from the Approved Annual Budget.  There were two costly items for the third quarter.  The first was a 3 million dollar estimate for the Voluntary Retirement Incentive Program and the other was the 3.5 million dollars expense from the College departure from IBM in regards to Workday.  I asked the president if the lost position from the Voluntary Retirement Incentive would be replaced by new full time position as part of the succession plan. Her answer was yes they would.

Conclusion

Overall, the BOG meeting was quite productive.  I was disappointed as I found the agenda to be extensive for a proposed two-hour meeting.   The presentation of the committee reports were passed over and the pace of the meeting seemed very fast.  Considering we had many issues to deal with and an in camera segment as well. I personally felt overloaded with information and rushed in my decision-making.  Attending the meeting remotely did not help.  I will make sure to be there in person from now on.  I hope this was a random occurrence.

Enrico De Francesco

Faculty Governor