Copy
January 2022
  • President's Update
  • Labour Relations Officer Update

  • MRSA Events
  • General Announcements

President's Update 
  

Happy New Year to each of you!  

I hope you had an opportunity to relax and recharge over the holidays... I know that I really needed the time to step away and focus on family this Christmas. But the new year brought our home a gift that keeps on giving called Covid. It ripped through our New Years family dinner with a vengeance and I'm still trying to recover. I had no idea that I could get so incredibly sick, as I'm double vaccinated and have a booster, which speaks to the importance of not letting your guard down. I hope you were able to stay healthy.

Many of you are now back on campus again but I know that we return cautiously. Please continue to monitor your workplace/office and advise us if you have any concerns with safety issues. We continue to press our employer to adhere to the most recently updated CMOH Record of Decision 55-2021. Laine will provide a further update on the Remote Working Grievance in her update.

By-Elections
As a reminder, we are looking to fill up our MRSA Executive team!! We have a number of vacancies we are trying to fill, including a Vice-President, two Directors at Large and an EDT committee member. You will be receiving a notice for a call for nominations starting January 10, along with position descriptions of these roles. If you are interested, or if you know of a great candidate for any of these roles, please fill out the nomination form and send it in to us. Remember, we need you and your passion to represent and support the incredible membership we have. Now more than ever, we need to stay strong and vigilant in our quest for workplace fairness, respect and safety.

Coffee Chat
Our next Coffee Chat will be on January 25 (10:00 am - 10:30 am). Joining us that day will be Feden Abeda, Safe Disclosure Advisor. The Office of Safe Disclosure is a new addition to Mount Royal which provides a range of services related to equity, human rights, discrimination and other safe disclosure concerns. We look forward to learning more about this very important service for our community from Feden.

Concordia University Faculty Strike
As you may have heard, Concordia University Faculty are currently in an active job action situation. This includes faculty, librarians, lab instructors, and placement coordinators. The main issues at hand remain job security and salary. Workload for laboratory instructors and libraries and intellectual property policy are also issues needing to be resolved. 

This is the first-ever faculty strike in Alberta history and the first in the post-secondary sector in two-and-a-half years. The Calgary PSE organizing group has decided to hold a press conference (socially distanced) in front of the MacDougall Centre Friday January 14 (10:00 am - 11:00 am) to demonstrate support for CUEFA and the post-secondary community as a whole. The MRSA has been asked for a brief quote regarding the CUEFA strike, the importance of solidarity and/or the value of the PSE sector to include in a press release. 

As an update, the MRFA is currently at Stage 4 - Deadline Watch of the Collective Bargaining Index.

The MRSA  Executive will continue to work remotely as per the recommendations of the Chief Medical Officer, but will determine whether individual meetings shall occur in person when necessary. Please contact us directly with any questions or concerns at mrsa@mtroyal.ca or lro@mrustaff.ca.

---

Michelle LoGullo | President
Mount Royal Staff Association
mlogullo@mtroyal.ca



Labour Relations Officer Update

Happy new year!  I do hope you're keeping well - but given how rampant COVID is these days, I also wish you better soon.  It seems that every second person I talk to is experiencing issues in their household due to this illness.  However, the works goes on - and so do we....

Data Systems:
The MRSA has been working to ensure we are sustainable and secure to represent your interests.  To achieve this the MRSA has recently purchased our own google workspace at our domain mrustaff.ca.  We continue to be in our testing phase, but we do have some email addresses active:

president@mrustaff.ca - Michelle Logullo, President
execadmin@mrustaff.ca - Christine Pepper, Executive Assistant
lro@mrustaff.ca - Laine Fowler, Labour Relations Officer

Should you wish to email the MRSA without using the mtroyal.ca addresses, we now are able to ensure a greater degree of confidentiality and independence from MRU.  Please note, we are maintaining all of our mtroyal.ca addresses to ensure continuity of service.  We have no current plans to stop using any of the available mtroyal.ca addresses.

Bargaining update:
We were planning to resume bargaining on January 14, 2022, for a full day.  However, due to escalating COVID cases we are going to cancel this date and hope to resume January 28, 2022.  We are being cautious as we are hoping to meet in person.

Grievance updates:
All policy grievances have now received a response from MRU, however, none of those responses have been sufficient to resolve the issues at hand.  Currently we have 3 active policy grievances - Remote Working, Vaccination Directive and Outsourcing.

Remote working grievance - we have extended time to proceed on this issue, as the next step is arbitration.  We are hoping that the employer, as per the email from Annalise Van Ham on December 21, 2022, will be able to roll out their remote working process.  However, we also understand that many employees are working from home currently.  Rather than escalating this process we are trying to find ways to resolve this issue as quickly and cost effectively as possible, for all parties.

Vaccination Directive grievance - we have advanced this grievance to arbitration.  The grievance is with the employer placing employees on unpaid leaves of absence and denying those employees access to Short term disability.  The MRSA is not contesting the employer's necessity to institute safety measures while the pandemic is ongoing.  

I also want to briefly share that the MRSA is aware that MRU has recently instituted voluntary rapid testing for employees who are "critical staff" on campus.  This is certainly a welcome measure given the ongoing and unpredictable nature of the COVID virus.  MRSA supports all safety measures in the workplace.  However, this seems contradictory given the Vaccination Directive and the inconsistency with some employees' requirement to attend campus.  In any case, we continue to represent all of our members' interests for a safe and fair treatment with the MRU.

Outsourcing - We have filed a grievance and most recently you would have received notice of the Unfair Labour Complaint, filed on December 17, 2021.  This issue revolves around MRU providing proper disclosure for current, ongoing or potential contracting out of bargaining unit work (your jobs potentially).  We are working to ensure that your rights are represented and we bargain the best possible collective agreement.  We are hopeful to resolve these issues as quickly as possible.  Please feel free to reach out to me or the Alberta Labour Relations Board if you have any questions.

Lunch n'Learns 

As mentioned in the previous newsletter we have several lunch n'learns beginning this semester.  All lunch n' learns will be from 12 - 12:50 and are hosted virtually.  Shortly before the date you will receive a link to join.

MRSA 101 - Tuesday, January 18, 2022
EDT Processes - Tuesday, February 3, 2022
Occupational Health and Safety - Tuesday, February 15, 2022
Bullying and Harassment - Tuesday, March 22, 2022
Human Rights and EDI - Tuesday April 19, 2022


To register please fill out this form.

For more detailed descriptions of the lunch n'learn sessions.

These topics are considerable, so these lunch n'learns will be a quick touch into these important areas of interest.  The goal of the lunch n'learn is to arm you with some vital information and resources so that you can feel empowered to exercise your rights, access process and support you in your workplace. Hope to see you there!
___________________________________

Stay safe,
Laine Fowler
Labour Relations Officer
 

 

MRSA Events

MRSA Coffee Chat

 

 

 

You are invited to join us for coffee and conversation on January 25 from 10:00-10:30 a.m. via Google Meet. This month, our guest will be Feden Abeda, Safe Disclosure Advisor. We hope you’ll join us to welcome Feden and to learn more about the new Office of Safe Disclosure.
Please click this link or copy and paste this URL in your browser:
https://meet.google.com/kjv-cxxf-kpp?hs=122&authuser=0

The Coffee Chat will be recorded for those who are able to attend. The December Coffee Chat recording can be found here.


MRSA Social Committee

Happy New Year!  The Social Committee hopes that you had time to relax over the holidays.  We are going to continue with virtual events for the months of January and February due to covid-19.  

January Crossword Puzzle

Participate by completing this puzzle and you could win a $20.00 e-gift card.  Make a copy of the puzzle and then share it with Charissa Hovdebo, chovdebo@mtroyal.ca  People who complete the puzzle correctly will be entered into a draw for the gift card.  Open to MRSA Members.

 Finishing School

Edith Koprek is going to continue to offer the virtual Finishing School sessions on Thursdays during the winter semester.  If you like fibre arts crafts and want to work on yours with others doing the same in a supportive and social setting, then join the Google Meet Link on Thursdays January 13 - April 29, 12:30-1:30 pm.  Add this link to your calendar now so you don’t forget.

 February Positive Notes Campaign

Once again we want to spread positivity and joy and we want you to help us do it!  During the month of February, send a positive or encouraging message to a colleague at MRU via the form and we will send it to them. You may choose to send it with your name or anonymously. The form will open on February 1 (It will currently state that it is no longer accepting responses.) and stay open until February 28 at 4:30pm.  For each note sent, we will enter your name into a draw for a $25.00 e-gift card (there will be 2 draws).  Open to MRSA Members.

The MRSA Social Committee would like to recognize the following important events for the month of January:  Gantan-Sai (Shinto), Epiphany (Christianity),  Feast of the Theophany (Christianity Orthodox), Feast of the Nativity (Christianity Orthodox), Birthday Guru Gobind Singh Ji (Sikhism), Maghi (Sikhism), Makar Sankranti (Hinduism), Tu B'Shvat (Judaism), Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (Christianity), Chinese/Vietnamese/Korean New Year (Buddhism).  Best wishes to all who are celebrating these occasions!

If you would like to contact the Social Committee, you can reach us at mrsasocial@mtroyal.ca


MRSA Staff Lounge

For staff working on campus, the MRSA staff lounge is open. We have worked with Environmental Health and Safety to ensure COVID-19 measures are being followed. The furniture has been arranged to ensure appropriate physical distancing including only one chair per table. Wipes and hand sanitizer have been placed in the lounge.

To ensure this space continues to be available please follow these measures:

 -Masks must be worn in the staff lounge except when eating or drinking. 

-One person per table or couch - please do not move tables or chairs.

-Wipe down microwaves and fridge after use.

-Wipe down faucets and the water filter lever after use.

-Wipe down the table and chair or couch that you use.

-Wipe down the TV remote after use.

-Please follow safe handwashing practices.


Events and Activities

MRU Student Massage Therapy Clinic is Open - support students and get a massage!

Appointments are now available for you to book at a reduced rate while supporting students. The experience they gain in the clinic is a critical piece of their education and we are proud to provide this vital service to our community. Whether you need a relaxation massage or have a condition that requires therapeutic treatment, our students are trained to the highest standards nationally and can meet your needs.
Book Now. The $30 fee for one-hour massage treatments supports our student scholarships. Present your MRU OneCard for a special MRU Advantage rate of $20. Please bring exact change or a cheque.

For more information, visit our website: mru.ca/bookamassage.

General Announcements

Winter EDT Application Period Now Open

If you have any professional or personal development courses that begin between January 1 - April 30, you can apply for funding through the MRSA EDT Committee. 

Applications are submitted via the EDT database; MRU login credentials are required to access.
 
The winter application period closes on April 30, 2022.

If you have any questions, please contact the EDT Committee at edtmrsa@mtroyal.ca

view this email in your browser
Copyright © 2018 Mount Royal Staff Association, All rights reserved.






This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
Mount Royal Staff Association · 4825 Mount Royal Gate SW · Calgary, Ab T3E6K6 · Canada