KFActs: Getting to Know Your New Collective Agreement: 2019-2022
By Rachelle Hollaway, Member-At-Large
The KFA-KPU 2019-2022 Collective Agreement was ratified by the membership on July 10, 2020. The following is a summary of important changes relevant to KFA members.
- Salary increase (Article 9): Faculty salaries will increase by 2% as of April 1, 2019; an additional 2% as of April 1, 2020; and an additional 2% as of April 2021. The current updated rate (4% higher than previously) was reflected in the November 20, 2020 pay statements. Retro pay for Regular and NR2 faculty was paid on December 18, 2020. Retro pay for NR1 faculty will be paid on January 29, 2021, unless manual calculations are involved. Retro pay or adjustments requiring manual calculations are to occur by the end of March 2021. (The KFA has filed a grievance on these timelines.)
- NR or recently retired faculty no longer working at KPU but who were employed by KPU at any point since April 1, 2019, had 8 weeks from the ratification date (July 27, 2020) to apply for retroactive pay. Members were contacted and retroactive pay is to be paid per above. Anyone who was still employed on the date of ratification but who has since left or retired does not need to apply. These employees should be paid out automatically as per the employer’s schedule. For most people, this means by the end of March 2021.
- NR1s placed on scale (Article 10): NR1 faculty will be placed and paid on the same salary scale as NR2 and Regular faculty (for the duration of their appointment) and will receive increments as FTE accrues. Service obligations such as committee work (in proportion with contract percentage) will apply. Please note that the scale calculation is currently in dispute, and the KFA has filed a grievance over the employer’s interpretation of the scale. Placement on the salary scale and FTE accumulation for increment progression began on September 1, 2020. Please contact the KFA if you have questions about placement on the salary scale as per Article 9.02.
Review of Class Size Past Practice
- LOU #13: As many faculty members are aware, the LOU #13 process is underway. Letter of Understanding #13 refers to the Joint Committee on Class Size Past Practice. All departments affected by LOU #13 have been contacted. Most departments have communicated their rationales for their respective class sizes. Past and future updates from Mark Diotte, VP Negotiations, are emailed to members and can be found here https://yourkfa.ca/news-issues/news-notices/ and within the fall AGM documents posted on the members’-only section of the KFA website.
Changes to Extended Health Coverage
- Extended health coverage (Article 15.01): The vision care allowance has increased from $500 to $650 every two years.
- Though not noted in the Collective Agreement, coverage/reimbursement for the first 5 visits for professional services has increased from $10 per visit to $20 per visit for chiropractor, naturopath, and podiatrist/chiropodist. More information is available in the Benefits Booklet available in SharePoint here: https://our.kpu.ca/sites/hr/benefits/SitePages/Manulife%20Benefit%20Booklets%20and%20Emergency%20Travel%20Assistance.aspx
Changes Involving Leave
- Requests to extend leaves (Article 13.02 (b)): If you are currently on leave or are planning to go on leave, please note that requests for extensions to leaves must be made “no later than sixty (60) calendar days prior to the agreed return date.” This is a new deadline that did not exist in the 2014-2019 Collective Agreement.
- Expanded leave provisions (Article 13):
- (13.07 and LOU 17) Supplemental benefits for parental leave may now be spread across up to 61 weeks. The period to apply for these benefits has been extended to up to 78 weeks after birth.
- (13.09) Compassionate care leave has been increased from 8 weeks unpaid leave to 27 weeks unpaid leave as per the BC Employment Standards Act.
- Leave provisions have been introduced for intimate, personal, and relationship violence (13.10); death or disappearance of a child (13.11/13.12); and Indigenous government elections and cultural leave for Indigenous employees (13.13/13.14).
- Ed leave deadlines (Article 14): There are new application deadlines for Educational Leave. The deadline for 2020 was October 31. The deadline for 2021 and ongoing is September 30. Members must have three years FTE before being considered for a four month Ed Leave and six years FTE for a 12 month Ed Leave. A notwithstanding clause allows for these applications to be considered if there are unused funds left in the Ed Leave fund by the end of the regular application process. The application process has also been clarified.
- Offers of NR2 contracts (Article 4.02 (o)): If an incumbent has been offered a second NR2 contract and declines, the Employer may, “in consultation with the Search Committee,” offer the position “to a faculty member from the qualified faculty list without posting.” This makes it easier for contracts to be assigned to faculty already on the qualified faculty list.
- Faculty search committees (Article 4.02): Up to 3 “alternate” members for departmental search committees may be elected each year. Previously, this article did not include the election of alternate search committee members. The search process is to be “guided by the principles of fairness and transparency and shall be “subject to the grievance/arbitration procedures set out in Article 17.02 and 17.03.”
- Interdisciplinary or interdepartmental search committees (Article 4.02 (b)): Several paragraphs have been added that describe the creation, membership, and scope of interdisciplinary or interdepartmental search committees.
- KFA appointments to administrative search committees (Article 4.10): The Union may appoint up to 3 regular faculty members to search advisory committees for President and VP-Academic, and up to 2 regular faculty members for various other positions, including “any administrative position with faculty oversight.” This means that the Union may appoint faculty members to search committees where the administrator will have oversight over faculty and not just where there is a direct reporting or supervisory relationship.
Clarification of Normal Duties Language
- Article 12.01: “Normal duties” of faculty members have been defined more specifically and extensively. Over three pages have been added that describe teaching duties, professional practice, service, scholarly activity, and professional development for faculty, librarians, counsellors, learning specialists, and learning strategists. These activities “may fall under the responsibility…of faculty members.” The list is not exhaustive and “not all activities may apply.” Undertaking these activities “constitutes a fair and reasonable work assignment,” meaning that faculty have the right to say no to more workload if it is not fair and reasonable or if they are asked to do too many of these activities.
Clarification of Layoff Language
- Consultation re: potential layoffs (Article 7): There is stronger language to ensure the Employer informs and consults with the Union “as soon as known” regarding “any changes that may impact the security of employment of any part of the workforce.”
- Article 4.05: Alternatives to the typical three-year department chair terms, and to the limit of two consecutive terms, may be agreed on. This important change means that anyone can run for chair despite not being able to serve a full three-year term, such as a faculty member who plans to retire in two years from the date of election.
Equity Initiative for Indigenous Employees
- LOU 16: As a result of this LOU, KPU and the KFA will apply to the Human Rights Tribunal “to obtain approval for a special program that would serve to attract and retain Aboriginal employees.”
- Article 21: Retiring faculty shall, upon their request, be placed on the Qualified Faculty List (QFL) and may be offered employment as NR1 faculty. This new language gives retiring faculty continued access to KPU email as long as the retired faculty member communicates their desire to remain on the QFL.
- Article 10: Retired faculty who come back to teach on an NR1 basis are paid on scale.
- NR1 contract offers (Article 5.06): the language was changed from “by contract” to “in writing.” This means that NR1 contracts include offers made via email even if an official contract has not been drafted.
- Article 12.10 (e): Unreserved and reserved semester and monthly parking passes at specified rates are now available.
Annual Unreserved – $120/year
Annual Reserved – $200/year
Semester Unreserved- $40/semester
Semester Reserved – $66.67/semester
Monthly Unreserved – $10/month
Monthly Reserved – $16.67/month
There is a new process to apply for monthly parking. Please see SharePoint here: https://our.kpu.ca/sites/as/parking/SitePages/Online%20staff%20and%20adm%20application.aspx
Impark’s Terms and Conditions are available here: https://impark.myparkingworld.com/terms/Print
- Usage of ‘banked’ overloads (Article 4.03 (b) (ii)): ‘Banked’ overload time (“compensatory time off”) must be used within 3 years or it will be automatically paid out. If the faculty member and dean are unable to agree on the scheduled time off, the overload time will be paid out.
Gender Neutral Language
- The Collective Agreement has been updated throughout with gender neutral language (they, their, them instead of he, his, she, hers).
- Article 18.01: All documents of a disciplinary nature will now be automatically removed from an employee’s personnel file after the relevant time period has passed. Faculty are no longer required to request this action.
Special thanks to Gillian Dearle, Mark Diotte, and Romy Kozak for their contributions to this article.