2010 has been extremely productive as we have received many arbitration decisions, Labour Board results and successfully negotiated numerous grievance settlements. We have grown as a membership with the inclusion of Research workers in our bargaining unit and we are in discussions with the employer to finalize the number of CPM positions that are now also included in our bargaining unit.
There are a number of other issues that are being dealt with through various avenues, including the Attendance Management Program that the employer has launched in the community in recent months. YUSA has filed a grievance on this and we have also held discussions with the employer about this issue to impress upon them the error of their way. It is irreconcilable that this employer could launch such a Program simultaneously with President Shoukri’s “Better Workplace Initiatives Program.”
These programs completely negate one another and it makes no sense. In the event that the employer has issues with an individuals’ attendance, those issues could be easily addressed through various articles in the Collective Agreement. There is no need to create a new Program. I am hopeful that the employer will recognize this and withdraw the Program. We all need to focus on ways to improve our community and increase the morale – not find ways in which to tear us apart. This will be something that I will continue to work towards in 2011.
As 2010 comes to a close, the other work of the YUSA office is not slowing down. We are just beginning a renovation in the union office that will allow us to function more effectively. The workload has certainly increased over the years and as such, it was necessary to bring in the YUSA 2nd Vice-President full-time into the office to manage the flow of work. The renovation will be completed by January 4, 2011.
In the interim, the YUSA office will still be functional. We will be checking voice mail and emails and will still be meeting with members. The physical office itself will be closed, but the full-time officers and staff will be accessible. If you have any questions or concerns/issues, please contact us at Ext. 55109 or any of our direct lines or email.
At this time, we are also preparing for a positive distraction. Our 35th Anniversary is on December 10, 2010. To earmark this occasion, we are re-launching our website, www.yusapuy.ca, and are also sending out to the YUSA community a lapel pin to celebrate our impressive history and acknowledge this grand occasion. In addition, we are holding a banquet on December 10, 2010 with all of the YUSA committee members (stewards, raters, etc.) to honour our history and accomplishments. We have not held such an event since 1999 and it is long overdue.
I truly hope that all of you have an enjoyable break from the University and that we all return safely in the New Year will an optimistic outlook for our future. This University should be a great place to work and a wonderful community to be part of. I plan to do everything that I can do to make that happen.
I invite you to join me in making our campus the best place to work and that each of us can contribute positively to rebuild our community. I want that for our University, for each of you and for myself. Enjoy your time off this Winter Break with family and friends and I look forward to serving this community in 2011 as President of this great extended family within the York University Staff Association.
Joanie Cameron Pritchett
President, York University Staff Association