Dear colleagues, 

Academic staff at the University of Alberta are incredibly valuable, but the Employer’s opening proposal unfortunately doesn’t speak to that fact. 

Today, AASUA and the Employer exchanged opening proposals, commencing the process of bargaining for a renewal Collective Agreement. The Employer’s opening proposal is deeply inadequate, and frankly dismisses the value academic staff bring to this university.  

In AASUA’s proposal, we asked for equity, parity, and respect. In return, these are some key aspects the Employer proposed:  

  • In contrast to AASUA’s reasonable and fiscally-informed proposal of a 17% across-the-board (ATB) salary increase, the employer’s ATB proposal all but ensures that we’ll be dead last in the U15 by the end of this contract. 
  • While AASUA is proposing the benefit plan be extended to all AASUA members, the Employer proposes to continue denying coverage to our precarious members trapped in short-term contracts.  
  • The Employer has no proposal to remove the two-tier salary scale for Academic Teaching Staff, and no proposal to enhance conversion to career status. 

I encourage you to read both opening proposals, as well as to read the fantastic opening remarks given by our Lead Negotiator, Cherie Klassen. They are a brilliant summary of all that AASUA is proposing in this round of bargaining. You can find the materials on our web page, here

Together we have faced budget cuts. We have weathered a reckless restructuring. We have taught and researched through a global pandemic. All this, only to hear our Employer won’t even hand us an oar to paddle through the tides of immense inflation. 

Enough is enough. 

In this round of bargaining, we can pull together to show our Employer that this proposal isn’t acceptable. That we aren’t backing down. Our negotiating team is only as strong as we are, and supporting them is crucial to get the best deal possible.  

One key way all members can support the negotiating team is by staying up to date on bargaining updates. For now, you can watch your inbox, but should the Employer lock us out of our email accounts during bargaining — as they have said they would in the past — we need a way to reach you. 

Please give us your personal contact information here.

Our next bargaining session with the Employer takes place March 28. For now, AASUA’s negotiating team will be hard at work reviewing all aspects of the Employer’s proposal in preparation.

In Solidarity, 

Gordon Swaters