Saint Mary's University Faculty Union ratified a collective agreement Sept. 12, which gives bargaining unit members substantial salary improvements.
According to the union's calculations, total compensation will amount to an average increase of just more than 16 per cent over three years.
SMUFU president Michael Vance said the union achieved "a salary settlement that we believe to be one of the best in the country. The annual percentage increase will be 3 per cent per year during the contract, but given the adjustment in steps the gains are much greater."
Another significant provision is the protection against contracting out. The employer cannot hire non-members to perform work that is "ordinarily performed or which could be performed" by a member of the bargaining unit.
And in a major step forward, a new complement clause requires that the courses taught by full-time faculty "shall be greater than 70 per cent of the total number of credit courses offered by the university." If the full-time faculty allotment falls below the required level, the university is required to authorize a sufficient number of new appointments to restore the percentage to at least the required level.
There are also substantial gains in recognizing the work of professional librarians, including improved research leave provisions.