The work of the USFA is primarily carried out by committees. It depends heavily on volunteers in all committee work, in the setting of policy and in the execution of proper procedures. The USFA has three kinds of committees:
- those that stem from the collective agreement and have representatives from both the employer and the union;
- those that are USFA standing committees or mandated by the USFA constitution;
- those that are ad hoc and are created as they are needed.
The collective agreement recognizes service to the USFA as part of the equitable assignment of duties and can be included as contributions to the administrative responsibilities of the University for consideration in collegial processes. Please consider volunteering. Your assistance is greatly appreciated.
USFA Committee on Committees
This Executive subcommittee reviews the terms of reference of all faculty committees, recommends the establishment of new committees, and recommends names of individuals for staffing of all committees.
USFA Committee of Trustees of the Contingency Trust Fund
The purpose of this Association committee is to manage the trust and to pay extraordinary expenses or costs, expressly approved by the Executive, in connection with collective bargaining activity, arbitration or any other proceedings involving issues associated with the terms and conditions of employment of faculty members of the University of Saskatchewan. The Committee has four members and meets about three times a year.
USFA Communications Committee
The purpose of the Communications Committee is to enhance communication to the USFA membership. It consists of at least 3 members, with 2 from the Executive, and meets weekly from September to June.
USFA Constitution Committee
The purpose of this occasional committee is to review, revise and recommend changes to the USFA constitution. This committee consists of at least three members, two of whom are members of the Executive Committee.
USFA Executive Committee
The Executive Committee consists of 12 members elected to a two-year term. This is the only USFA committee whose members must be elected by the membership. Elections are held each year for one half of the Executive Committee members. This committee carries out the administration of the Association between general meetings. It directs matters of Association business to the appropriate committee.
USFA External Relations Committee
This is an occasional committee with a mandate to develop public awareness about educational issues and to establish a liaison with other organizations concerned about education.
USFA Financial Appeal Committee
Created in 2005 because of the increase in requests for financial assistance of a non-charitable nature, this committee of three considers all non-charitable requests for financial assistance referred to it by the Executive and decides on the amount of financial assistance the USFA should provide.
USFA Grievance Committee
The Association Grievance Committee (AGC) receives and reviews complaints from members of the Association, advises which cases should be pursued at the Joint Grievance Committee, and assumes ownership of the grievance pursuant to Article 2.2.
USFA Member Development Committee
The Member Development Committee was created to facilitate succession planning for the USFA. Its purpose is to create initiatives to increase the participation of USFA members in the work of the USFA. It oversees USFA Awards.
USFA Planning and Assessment Committee
This subcommittee of the USFA Executive Committee was created in 2010. Its purpose is to assess the overall work of the Association, to refer issues to appropriate USFA committees and to formulate work plans for consideration of the Executive Committee. It is composed of 4 members of the Executive and USFA Staff.
USFA Committee on the Status of Visible Minorities
This Association committee arose from the need to promote the Non-Discrimination Article of the Collective Agreement (Article 7) and to promote harmony on campus. It examines the needs of particular visible minority groups; acts as a contact group for visible minority members and educates members of the bargaining unit about minority issues on campus.
USFA Committee on Women’s Issues
The USFA Committee on Women’s Issues acts as a point of contact and action group for issues of relevance to women members of the Faculty Association; works to educate members of the bargaining unit about women’s issues on campus and the experience of women in academia; and identifies issues of concern for women faculty at the U of S and works to address them through information, education and leadership.
USFA Observers on University Committees
Under the Collective Agreement, Faculty Association Observers are required for the following Committees:
- Appointments Forum
- President’s Review Committee (2)
- Promotions Appeal Committee
- Tenure Appeals Committee
- Sabbatical Leave Appeal Committee (2)
- University Review Committee (2)
Observers have voice but no vote. Their purpose is to ensure the provisions of the Collective Agreement are followed. Observers are encouraged to make suggestions which they deem appropriate for changes in the Agreement or procedures that could improve the work of the committees.
Collective Negotiating Committee (CNC)
The CNC includes four Association and four Employer representatives. It has the authority to engage in collective bargaining, to conclude a tentative Collective Agreement with the Employer and to give notice in writing before the expiry of the Agreement to the Employer to negotiate.
Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Administrative Board
The eight member EAP Board is comprised of one representative from each of the USFA, CUPE (Local 1975), ASPA, CUPE (Local 3287), three employer representatives and one external member chosen by the other board members. The responsibilities of the Board include the determination of policy for the Program, financial accountability and assessment of the effectiveness of the Program. The Joint Stakeholder Agreement for the U of S EAP outlines the program structure. Visit the EAP Website for more information.
Faculty Association Representatives (FARs)
FARs are appointed by the Executive Committee to represent and to serve as a liaison between members of the departmental (or non-departmentalized Colleges) units and the Executive Committee. Each unit should have a representative. One important role is to ensure that correct procedures are carried out in department committees or in other collegial processes covered in the Collective Agreement. Another is to pass on views and suggestions about what matters should be included in the future negotiations.
Joint Benefits Committee
The Joint Benefits Committee includes three members appointed by each party. It is an active committee that meets at least once a month. It was established in 2000 with primary responsibilities to deal with all benefits except pensions; to consider new benefit plans; to recommend changes in benefit plans to the Collective Negotiating Committee; and to seek to resolve complaints from members regarding benefit plans.
Joint Committee for Management of the Agreement (JCMA)
JCMA has four Employer and four Faculty Association representatives who meet once a month. Authorized by the Collective Agreement (Article 32), its terms of reference include determination of issues specifically placed before it by the terms of the Collective Agreement; serving as a forum for the exchange of information, reviewing and where possible resolving matters of mutual concern.
This body supports the work of USFA representatives to JCMA by providing information and insight on matters before the joint committee. It is comprised of interested USFA members.
Joint Grievance Committee (JGC)
The JGC has three Employer and three Association Representatives. It attempts to resolve grievances and complaints concerning terms and conditions of employment either as informal inquiries or through formal grievance procedures. It meets once a month. All discussions, position papers, documents, letters and other materials received by the AGC or JGC are confidential.
With the establishment of the Defined Benefit Pension Plan and Defined Contribution Pension Plan as two separate entities, the former AFBC has been dissolved and two new committees have been struck. Each consists of six persons, three appointed directly by the Board and three by the Association.
Occupational Health Committee
The University has set up one central committee with membership from all constituencies. There are two USFA members and there are approximately five meetings per year.
Saskatchewan Association of University Teachers (SAUT)
The USFA along with the unions representing faculty at STM and U of R, formed SAUT with a goal to work together for the attainment of the highest possible standards of academic excellence in the pursuit and dissemination of knowledge, to be achieved principally through teaching, scholarship, research and public service. The USFA appoints one representative to SAUT.
Saskatchewan Federation of Labour (SFL)
As a union affiliated to the SFL with more than 1000 members in Saskatchewan, the USFA is entitled to one Vice-President position on the SFL Executive Council and is entitled to put forward representatives for appointment to the various SFL committees and working groups as well as seat delegates at the SFL Annual Convention. This is an important way in which USFA members are connected to other workers in Saskatchewan.