Message from Scott Prudham, UTFA President – News for UofT Librarians

Pls Review Documents: Changes to MoA MoA revised UTFA version October 17 2013 redlined v original  Academic Planning Document UTFA proposal on academic restructuring revised May 23 2013 (3)

Librarians should note proposed changes to article 3, research leaves, workload and all other articles in MoA, as they pertain to faculty AND librarians. Members of the UTFA Librarians’ Committee have been working behind the scenes to ensure that the dated policies and working conditions currently at U of T, when being revised and discussed, are address and, in turn, modified to reflect your concerns. See recent letter and video below from Scott Prudham.

Dear Colleagues:

I am writing to draw your attention to two important documents that UTFA negotiators are tabling in the context of the Special Joint Advisory Committee (SJAC) process, a joint initiative of the U of T Governing Council and UTFA. The first is UTFA’s proposed revisions to the Memorandum of Agreement prescribing the role of the Association at U of T, and thus the role of UTFA in representing you. The second is a policy on the procedural aspects of significant academic planning and restructuring initiatives. (Both are attached to this message as PDFs)

The SJAC process includes in its core terms of reference a review of the strengths and weaknesses of the MoA, with a look to modernizing a document dating to the late 1970s. The MoA is crucial in prescribing what UTFA may and may not do in providing a collective, independent, and democratically accountable voice for faculty and librarians in the determination of our monetary and non-monetary terms and conditions of employment. The SJAC process allows UTFA and the Governing Council to explore reform of the existing MoA as an alternative to the stark polarities of no change to the current framework on the one hand, and union certification of the faculty association on the other hand. This is a strategy that has been consistently supported by the majority of colleagues in outreach over the course of recent years, and that support is what gave rise to the SJAC initiative.

In tabling our proposal, we understand that this process requires agreement of the parties to any change in the MoA, and, fundamentally, to any change in the way we determine the non-academic policies that shape the context of work for faculty and librarians at U of T. While we have access to a professional neutral facilitator in the Honourable Frank Iacobucci, his role is strictly to facilitate rather than to award a settlement in this process. Accordingly, we look forward to engaging with the representatives of the Governing Council in the SJAC process on the UTFA proposals to revise the MoA and we are eager to learn – as we know are you – what ideas they in turn have in mind for reform and modernization.

Please note that the SJAC is also tasked specifically with examining the role of faculty and librarians in academic planning. As we have learned in our outreach, including the survey of February 2013, there is very strong support for UTFA and the Governing Council to negotiate a new policy defining what collegiality and shared governance really mean in the context of academic planning and restructuring.

I encourage you to review these documents (attached to this message) and to watch the short video we have posted on our website ( that provides an overview of some of the most significant changes to the MoA that UTFA is proposing.  If you have comments, questions or concerns, please write to You may also want to make use of our new discussion board on the home page of the website.
I hope this finds you well,
Scott Prudham

This entry was posted in Academic freedom, Academic governance, Academic Librarianship, MoA - UofT Memorandum of Agreement with Administration, SJAC, Uncategorized, UTFA Bargaining, UTFA Video. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s