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May 2022
  • President's Update
  • Labour Relations Officer Update
  • General Election / General Meeting
 
  • Committee Reports
  • MRSA Events
  • General Announcements

President's Update 
  

Well,  April has come to a close and with that, May unfolds with so much going on for our MRSA community.

I want to start off by acknowledging and thanking the PD Committee for their outstanding work on our PD week (April 26 - 28). Once again, they brought us informative and meaningful sessions in physical, financial, mental and emotional health. We were able to participate in relationship and professional skills building and well as hearing more about equity, diversity and inclusion. The keynote speakers brought great insight into overcoming adversity, connecting with community, the value of persistence when learning something new, knowing when to ask for help and giving yourself permission to fail. 

Thanks again to those who participated in both the April and the February PD weeks, and kuddos to the PD Committee once again for trying something new and thinking outside of the traditional box of a single event, given the challenges of a pandemic. We hope that we can connect in person again in the future. Many thanks to:

  Courtney Montgomery (Chair)
  Pamela Karlenzig
  Amy McCarthy
  Claire Grant
  Chelsey Schafer
  Cahrissa Hovdebo
  Sharmila Rahabhat
  Tara Grams
  Telaina Sewers
  Wendy Mayers

Campaigning and Elections 
You will have received the MRSA update on nominations for the Executive Board and EDT Committee. I want to congratulate Crystal Koch and Craig Baskett for their renewed terms by acclamation as Vice-President and Treasurer. These two MRSA members have worked incredibly hard in their Executive roles and in their capacity of Chairs on the Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee (Crystal) and  the Audit and Finance Committee (Craig). I look forward to working with them again over the next two years and continuing the work we have identified.

That means that I am returning as your MRSA President (by acclamation) for the next two years and I look forward to continuing the momentum we have initiated in the previous two years. I have gratitude for the words of encouragement and support that I have received, and I also appreciate the constructive feedback that some of you have provided. I continue to be committed to building on my skills and knowledge through ongoing training inorder to best represent our membership. This has been an incredibly arduous two year term with unprecedented challenges that the pandemic has presented, but I believe that the incredible work and effort of the MRSA Executive and Committees has carried us through and proven that we are a resilient and strong community. 

With that, I am thrilled to see that we have a race for the Director-at-Large positions, and I encourage you all to review the nominee campaign statements and participate in the candidate forums that will be occurring. This is an opportunity to "meet" and learn more about each of the candidates and vote for the amazing volunteers that you feel will best represent you and your interests. Please exercise your democratic right as a dues paying member of the MRSA and vote on May 9/10 for Director-at-Large nominees.

Strategic Planning
On June 15, the MRSA Executive and our Committees will be meeting to review our 2019 - 2022 Strategic Plan and work on a new future focus for the MRSA. I am proud to report that we have reached several identified priorities and objectives from our previous plan, including increased communication, educational opportunities and engagement of our membershipship. We have judiciously scanned our financial landscape and met the previously identified objectives to represent and sustain our membership both monetarily and legally. There will always be new goals and objectives for our association to aim for and we look forward to working with Justin Solamillo from the Government of Alberta Community Development Unit to build on our current Strategic Plan. In preparation for this work, you will be receiving a short survey shortly. In the interest of identifying where we need to focus our efforts, your input is very valuable. Thank you in advance for your participation.

MRSA General Meeting (May 18)
We will be convening on May 18 for our annual GM. This event will be a hybrid meeting so we encourage those to join us in person (J301) or virtually. This event will be livestreamed and recorded for those that cannot physically attend. Please have patience with us as we attempt a hybrid meeting for the first time since we parted ways over two years ago. We have support from our IT department to help us out, but we appreciate your understanding as we try this initiative for the first time.

At the conclusion of this meeting, our amazing Social Committee will be sponsoring a Spring Social with lots of goodies to share with you all! Thanks to: 
  • Charissa Hovdebo (Chair)
  • Kaylee Butler
  • Claire Grant
  • Fatima Kessler
  • Wendy Mayers
  • Janalee Morris
  • Christine Pepper
  • Andrew Smith
Events on Campus
I am happy to announce some favourite community events returning in person:

Big Bob's TVP BBQ (May 24)
Buy a ticket for a great BBQ lunch cooked up for us by Robert Mariani from the MRFA Bistro. This event raises awareness and funds for the Transitional Vocational Program. This is an amazing program that supports adults with developmental disabilities to find and maintain competitive employment through a variety of courses including Life Skills, Basic Living Skills, Learner's Licence Test Preparation, Eating Right and Standard First Aid. Join us for entertainment, door prizes and great company!! We'll be selling tickets shortly so make eye contact when we come for you (lol)!

MRFA Appreciation Day BBQ (May 26)
Because who can't get enough burgers in a week, right? The MRFA is hosting its annual appreciation BBQ for staff, so come on out and grab a free burger, lemonade and cake from the faculty team who want to say thanks for all the work you have done both on site and remotely over the last year (or two). A great chance to sit down and share your plans for summer with your colleagues (and catch up on what you did last year).

Convocation (June 1 - 3)
That's right! Three days of two ceremonies each, so six celebrations. Come on out and volunteer your time to send our grads off with pride. They have worked really hard to make it through most of their university time online and we need to celebrate their accomplishments. Nothing made my heart happier than volunteering my time gowning the graduates and hearing about their educational experiences. There are lots of volunteer opportunities available 
including marshalling, pinning and handing out parchments, so please consider participating in this celebration by filling out this form.

Indigenous Graduation Celebration (June 4)
Oki, Amba'wastitch, Danit'ada, Tansi and Congratulations to our Indigenous graduates. The MRSA wishes to acknowledge this special ceremony and we celebrate their achievements. We are so very proud of their success at MRU.

Continue to take care of yourselves. We are seeing new incidents of COVID on campus so please follow the updates and health measures affecting our campus, including awareness of workplace hazards and forms to report safety concerns. 

Now go, and may the fourth be with you (lol, I always wanted to say that)!!

---

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



Labour Relations Officer Update

Bargaining Update

This month we hope to have significant news for you regarding bargaining.  On April 19, I provided news that the MRSA and MRU have applied for joint mediation.  We have been able to schedule a mediator for May 16 and 31.  

We are very hopeful to conclude this long round of negotiations and have a tentative agreement to present to you for ratification.  We have virtual town halls scheduled to discuss this process and any more updates on May 3 and 4.  Should you need details for those meetings please contact mrsa@mrustaff.ca and we can resend that information to you.


Remote Working

Otherwise in Labour Relations, we continue to pursue Mount Royal adopting a remote working program.  We have seen some recent progress and hope to see Mount Royal provide full details to you shortly.

 

COVID

We have also seen a resurgence of COVID on campus.  Your occupational health and safety representatives continue to advocate for members and support all mitigation efforts to support all employees for a safe and healthy workplace.  Please be careful and as a reminder - you are required to self isolate if you have any of the core symptoms.  Some folks may have milder symptoms, but this round of COVID is highly transmissible, so please be mindful of those who may suffer more than you.  Self isolation continues to be a requirement of the government and Mount Royal policy.  Please review the policies and guidance documents if you are unsure.

 

Pay Cycle change

In the past week we have received further information and documentation from Mount Royal regarding this upcoming change.  If you missed the town hall meetings, or have any question please contact hrpayrollproject@mtroyal.ca or visit the MyMRU page with updated information.  You now have the details available for employees who wish to make use of the advance option.  Please ask questions and do your due diligence to ensure that this is the best choice for you.

Mount Royal Human Resources continue to update information in the FAQ on the MyMRU pages.  For clarity, you do have the ability to request payout of your Overtime or Accumulated time banks, by requesting payout of these banks directly from your managers.  Should your manager be unwilling or unsure of these requests, please feel free to engage with HR or me.

You do not have the right to request payout from your vacation bank as this bank is negotiated to ensure you have the opportunity to take paid time off, as per the collective agreement.  However, should you and/or your family be experiencing hardship due to the impending paycycle change please reach out to me at lro@mrustaff.ca to explore other options that you may be able to access.

 

Lunch n’ Learns

Thank you to everyone who participated in our Lunch n’ Learns during the winter 2022 semester.  These were a great first step towards building greater empowerment and knowledge in our membership of YOUR RIGHTS.  For the fall semester we will be focusing on more practical knowledge on the following topics:

Collective Agreement Interpretation - an Introduction

Grievances - Dispute Resolution and Process

Dues - What is all that $$ for and why?

Job Action - Strike, lockout and Essential Services

 

I look forward to seeing you there! 

 

___________________________________

Stay safe,

Laine Fowler
Labour Relations Officer


2022 General Election

We are pleased to announce the following candidates for the upcoming General Election:

Executive Board | Director-at-Large (four members: two-year terms 2022-2024)
Leslie Blondahl
Charissa Hovdebo
Pam Karlenzig
Katelyn Oszust
James Parsons
Alynne Pols
Akhilesh Prasad 

Please note, Claire Grant has withdrawn her nomination.

The Nomination Campaign Statements for each of the candidates are available for your review. 
 
The campaign period is now in effect until May 6. Candidates are invited to review the Nomination and Elections Policy and Procedures and the Campaign Policy for further details.
 
The election will take place online and will open at 9 a.m., May 9 and close at 4 p.m. May 10.
The results will be shared on Wednesday, May 11.
 
No nominations were pursued for the role of Vice-President (one member: one-year term 2022-2023).

          ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
We are also pleased to announce the following candidates elected by acclamation in accordance with the Nomination and Elections Policy:
 
Executive Board
President (2022-2024): Michelle LoGullo
Vice-President (2022-2024): Crystal Koch
Treasurer (2022-2024): Craig Baskett

EDT Committee Members (2022-2024)
Stacey Anderson
Katie Cross Jody Jones
Jessica Lee Wah
 
The Nomination Campaign Statements of those elected by acclamation are available for your reference.

Thank you to all who participated in the nomination process, and to our existing Executive Board and Committee members for their work on behalf of the membership and for their support of the Association. 
 
Christine Pepper | Elections and Voting Chair



General Meeting

You are invited to attend the General Meeting in-person in J301: Lincoln Park Room, or watch the live stream on Wednesday, May 18 from 10:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 

The meeting agenda and approved 2022-23 budget will be emailed to members soon. 

Please use this link to view the live stream, or copy and paste this URL into your browser: 

https://stream.meet.google.com/stream/a3ba4bee-93a3-4cce-b3eb-0d4595a38e8a?authuser=0

Access to the live stream will only be available to @mtroyal.ca email accounts. 

Staff are invited to submit questions or comments for the Executive Board ahead of, and during, the meeting.

We hope you can join us!

Committee Updates


Joint Occupation Health and Safety Committee (JOHSC)

 

You can now reach out directly to the committee by emailing JOHSC@mtroyal.ca

Here are the minutes from the last meeting JOHSC Minutes.

Remember that you have rights as an employee:

  • The right to know,
  • The right to participate, and
  • The right to refuse dangerous work.

MRSA Events

MRSA Coffee Chat

 

 

 

 

Please join us for coffee and conversation on May 30 from 10:00 - 10:30 a.m. via Google Meet. Please click this link or copy and paste this URL in your browser:
https://meet.google.com/heo-wzcy-jiq?hs=122&authuser=0


MRSA Social Committee

As I’m writing this message, it is snowing pretty heavily outside, it doesn’t feel like spring to me yet; however, the Social Committee is excited to invite you to our first in-person event in over two years.  Please add this in your calendar now!



The Finishing School group will continue to meet once a week to work on yarn arts (knitting, crochet, or other fibre art crafting).  They will begin meeting in-person on Thursdays starting May 19 until August 25, 2022; 12:30 - 1:30 p.m. in the MRSA Staff Lounge - room W 305. However, don’t worry, if you enjoy joining them virtually, you will still be able to do that as well. Here is the Google Meet link for the dates May 19 - Aug. 25 in case you wish to join virtually. If you’re joining them in-person, feel free to also bring a coffee or your lunch to eat while you craft.  New fibre art enthusiasts WELCOME to join anytime!

The MRSA Social Committee would like to recognize the following important events for the month of May: Asia Heritage Month, Eid al-Fitr (Islam), Twelfth day of the Festival of Ridván (Bahá’í), Buddha Day/Wesak/Visakha Puja (Buddhist), World Cultural Diversity Day, Declaration of The Báb (Bahá’í), Ascension of Báha’u’lláh (Bahá’í), The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, and the National Day of Reason.  Best wishes to all who are recognizing and/or celebrating these occasions!


In an effort to be more inclusive, the Social Committee would like your feedback to help us become aware of any events or special dates that you celebrate that you would like acknowledged by the Social Committee.  Fill in this form to let us know. Submissions will be anonymous unless you would like to provide your name to help with an event.

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


2022 PD Days -- That's a wrap! 

 MRSA PD Days 2022 has come to an end and the PD Committee would like to extend our sincere thanks to all the MRSA members and volunteers who made this possible. Over the past three months we offered 26 unique virtual sessions, delivered by 19 sets of presenters, and over 34 hours of content.

The PD Committee values feedback from all MRSA members. We invite you to complete the MRSA PD Days Feedback form, whether you attended any PD sessions this year or not. 

 All feedback received will be used to inform future PD planning. Those who complete a feedback form will be entered into a draw for a $50 e-gift card from a local business of their choice (Una Pizzeria, Village Ice Cream, The Livery Shop, 17th Avenue Shops, or The Sunday Shop). The deadline to submit and be eligible for the draw is Thursday, May 19, 2022.

 Your contribution is greatly appreciated!  If you are interested in joining the PD Committee for next year, please reach out to the MRSA office at mrsa@mtroyal.ca.

 Thank you again,

The PD Committee

 

General Announcements

MRU Events/Notices



Masking on Campus

Employees can pick up a box of rated surgical masks at the rapid testing area in G100 (the old library on Main Street). Show your OneCard or ID to receive a box, which should last approximately 45 working days. If supplies last, you can then pick up a new box.

Planning for your retirement? 

It’s never too early to plan for your retirement. Mount Royal runs a two-day course titled Planning for Personal Freedom facilitated by a Financial Counselor who has been practicing in the industry for over 15 years. This hands-on workshop is designed for participants (and their partner/spouse) who would like to evaluate their ability to maintain their lifestyle at a chosen retirement date.

There are three basic objectives to the workshop: 

1. To identify and address any immediate issues with respect to your retirement plans, 

2. To provide a planning framework to help you plan long term goals, and 

3. To provide specific information in the key areas of lifestyle, finance and estate planning. 

A minimum of 30 employees are needed to run the workshop. If this is of interest to you please add your name to the waitlist and indicate your preferred time of year for the workshop (three choices). 

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.


MRSA Credit Course Tuition Applications

June 30 is the deadline for MRSA members to apply for up to $500 of tuition reimbursement for a credit course at an accredited post-secondary institution. Download the application and email your completed form to mrsa@mrustaff.ca beginning June 1. Electronic signatures will be accepted. Please contact prodev@mtroyal.ca with any questions. The application can also be found on MyMRU under Employee/Human Resources/HR Toolkit > Other Resources > Professional Development.
 

Spring EDT Application Period now open!

If you have any professional or personal development courses that begin between May 1 - June 30,  2022 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 spring application period closes on June 30, 2022.

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

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