After having spent most of last year without a contract, York University Faculty Association ratified a three-year contract between academic staff and the university, ending seven months of negotiations.
Scott Forsyth, YUFA’s chief negotiator, said the two sides reached a tentative agreement on Jan. 13 with the help of a provincial conciliator.
The new contract, which covers May 1, 2006 through April 30, 2009, includes a 3 per cent salary increase in the first year and a 3.5 per cent increase the remaining two years. The contract also has higher step values and professional expense increases, Forsyth said. Progress through the ranks steps will grow from $2,340 to $2,700 at the end of the contract’s term, while professional expense reimbursement entitlement will increase from $1,250 to $1,450.
In addition, with the three-year agreement retroactive to May 1, 2006, funding is assured for academic units that develop plans to reduce teaching loads from 3 full-time equivalent courses to 2.5, Forsyth said, adding, “this will affect almost 25 per cent of our members.”
Other highlights of the contract are higher benefits coverage, improvements to workload credits for graduate supervision, new flexible retirement options, including an enriched post-retirement teaching rate of $16,238, expanded affirmative action training and a new task force on diversity and inclusivity to conduct a diversity audit.
“Because of our members’ strong support, we were able to achieve a good range of improvements,” Forsyth said.