Conciliation brings change in DFA priorities

The Dalhousie Faculty Association’s negotiating strategy seems to have undergone a turnaround over the past few months.
Check out how the two sides’ priorities have changed:

DFA

Summer: 

The non-monetary issues, such as childcare and maternity leave, were supposed to be figured out before the monetary ones, such as pensions and salaries. That was laid out in the ground rules, which are published on the Dal administration negotiations blog. If both sides agreed, that rule could be changed.

The problem is that the pension has issues with its structure and governance as well as the money involved, so it can be considered both a non-monetary and monetary issue depending on your agenda.

January:

In early January DFA president Anthony Stewart called for conciliation.

Stewart told the Gazette the main reason for the move was that Dal administration was “not as seriously engaged with the non-monetary issues as they should be,” and that they insisted on talking about the pension before the day-to-day issues that affect staff.

Now: 

At the first conciliation meeting on Feb. 1 the DFA put forth a proposal that included both non-monetary solutions and a pension proposal, said Stewart at the Feb. 10 press conference.

They hoped to discuss the most contentious issue, and the one they had previously avoided: the pension.  But the admin stuck to the rules this time and refused to talk pension until non-monetary issues were done.

Administration/Board of Governors

Summer:

Same as DFA: The non-monetary issues, such as childcare and maternity leave, were supposed to be figured out before the monetary ones, such as pensions and salaries. That was laid out in the ground rules, which are published on the Dal administration negotiations blog. If both sides agreed, that rule could be changed.

The problem is that the pension has issues with its structure and governance as well as the money involved, so it can be considered both a non-monetary and monetary issue depending on your agenda.

January: 

A big problem with the pension plan is that the government wants it to be jointly funded. The administration, who is currently the sole sponsor and liable for all the missing money, does as well. The DFA does not.

Jasmine Walsh, chief negotiator for admin, told the Gazette the system would “achieve a sustainable defined benefit pension plan.”

Now: 

The Dal negotiations blog, which is updated by the administration’s bargaining team, doesn’t mention the DFA’s proposal but does emphasize the “ground rules.”

It also says the negotiations have made “considerable progress.”

Leave a Comment





Torey Ellis

Torey was the Copy Editor of the Gazette for Volume 145 and Assistant News Editor for Volume 144.

Posted in ,
MENU