Labour Management Committee | Minutes | December 8, 2011

 

MCMASTER UNIVERSITY AND MUALA LABOUR MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE

Thursday, December 8, 2011
10:30 am 12:00 pm
MUSC Room 213

Representing MUALA: Nick Ruest (Meeting Chair), Laura Banfield, Ines Perkovic Representing the University: Jeff Trzeciak, Liz Bayley, Dale Askey Administrative Support: Melanie Garaffa


NOTES


1. Follow up on action items from September 6, 2011

Item 2: Instruction and Workload:
ACTION PROPOSED: In order to get a higher level uniform message about expectations, Jeff Trzeciak will discuss this issue with the Library Leadership Team at the September 7 meeting and get back to MUALA with suggestions.

ACTION TAKEN: Jeff had a discussion with all members of the Library Leadership Team for the purposes of ensuring expectations were uniform among librarians with regards to instruction.

Item 3: Professional Service and Activity:
ACTION PROPOSED: Jeff Trzeciak will meet with the Library Leadership Team to discuss performance and goal setting in order to establish consistency in application. Liz Bayley will be invited to these meetings so as to maintain alignment between the UL and HSL.

ACTION TAKEN: Jeff Trzeciak and Liz Bayley have committed to discuss performance and goal setting on an annual basis, starting in 2012, to establish consistency in application.

Item 4: Morale:
ACTION PROPOSED: Nick Ruest would bring forward to MUALA members the offer from Jeff Trzeciak to meet with individual librarians as an attempt to start rebuilding trust and discuss strategies for improving morale and communication. Nick Ruest will also solicit ideas to improve morale from the MUALA membership. Jeff Trzeciak will await Nick Ruest's response.

ACTION TAKEN: MUALA responded on September 19, 2011 via email that the MUALA members had passed the following motion:

“MUALA members state that given that we have a long standing motion of non-confidence in the University Librarian, and given that we've undertaken a review of the University Librarian that we have submitted to the President and Provost, and given that the President and Provost have established a review of the University Library, we would prefer to defer any meetings with the subject of morale until the University Library Review is completed, after which we anticipate meeting with the University Librarian in a structured and mediated format.”

MUALA clarified that the motion precluded not just the proposed individual meetings, but any discussion at all.

Liz Bayley expressed concern over the statement in Nick Ruest’s blog that the offer from Jeff Trzeciak to meet with individual librarians as an attempt to start rebuilding trust and discuss strategies for improving morale and communication was “the best the University could do”. The University re-iterated that the offer was not the best the University could do but only one idea put forward by the University to begin the discussion around strategies to improve morale and communication.

Item 5: Article 2 Recognition and Article 22 Appointment and Promotion:

ACTION PROPOSED: Both parties agreed to defer this agenda item to the next meeting.
ACTION TAKEN: MUALA withdrew the item from the agenda and advised there was no need for

further discussion.

 

2. Confidentiality around discussions and communications outside LMC:

The University expressed concerns over information that was discussed publicly from the previous LMC meeting prior to the minutes being published and released. It was the University’s understanding that all discussions at LMC were to be conducted in confidence. The exception to this were those discussions that were agreed by both parties as requiring the involvement of others outside LMC membership, as per the minutes of the September 6, 2011 LMC meeting. The purpose of the LMC meetings is to review and discuss matters of concern to either party. The meeting is intended as a forum wherein matters of mutual concern and benefit can be freely and candidly discussed. If all LMC discussions and comments were shared outside LMC and not limited to the minutes that were subsequently agreed to between both Parties and posted, it seemed to contradict the intent of the meeting.

MUALA stated that they would not agree to a blanket statement of confidentiality for all discussions and comments expressed at LMC meetings.

ACTION: To resolve this issue, the University and MUALA agreed to declare before any discussion or comments were made about an agenda item, whether the discussion or comments were to be “in camera” or “in confidence”.

3. Librarian Classification Level Descriptions, Article 22.20:

On behalf of the University Library and Health Sciences Library, Melanie Garaffa distributed the

Librarian Classification Level descriptions to MUALA as per Article 22.20.

MUALA requested that the document which lists all librarians and corresponding classification levels be updated and posted to the libstaff website.

ACTION: MUALA will review the document and bring forward any concerns to the next LMC meeting for the University to take under advisement.

ACTION: The University will update and post the librarians and corresponding classification levels document.

4. Union Release Time, Article 5.03:

As per Article 5.03(c) of the Collective Agreement, MUALA is entitled to Union Release Time (paid or unpaid). The University reminded MUALA that advanced permission was required as per the language in this Article. MUALA responded that most of their Union meetings were being held over the lunch hour on the members’ own time. The University responded that this was not necessary, as Union Release Time was available for those activities as described in Article 5.03 of the Agreement.

MUALA acknowledged the responsibilities as set out in Article 5.03. 

5. Update on Collective Agreement Publication:

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Melanie Garaffa advised that the Collective Agreement had been sent for publishing and that a price quote would be provided to MUALA before proceeding with printing. Melanie advised MUALA that the Collective Agreement is also available at http://www.workingatmcmaster.ca/med/document/MUALA-CA-2011-2015-1-42.pdf for reference until printed copies are made available.

 

6. Scent-Free Meetings:

MUALA raised concerns about the need to adopt a scent-free environment during future LMC meetings and other scheduled meetings between MUALA and management.

The University referred MUALA to the current McMaster University Scent-Aware Guidelines established in 2004 (http://fhs.mcmaster.ca/safetyoffice/documents/ScentAwarenessGuidelinesAp...).

ACTION: In adherence to the recommended response to scent-related issues as per the University guideline, the University will undertake all reasonable efforts to support this initiative at future LMC meetings and other scheduled meetings between MUALA and Management.

 

7. ILL Requests for retired MUALA Librarians:

MUALA raised concerns that the University Library has adopted a policy that does not allow retired MUALA Librarians to use Interlibrary Loan services.

The University stated that this practice is not a new University Library policy but a practice that has existed for many years within the library system. Prior to the certification of MUALA as the bargaining agent for librarians, librarians were members of the McMaster University Faculty Association (MUFA). As members of MUFA, retired Librarians enjoyed the privilege similar to that of retired faculty, to have an id card which allowed full use of McMaster libraries, including interlibrary loans. These library privileges no longer applied to MUALA retirees. The University certainly recognizes that librarians may continue to contribute as members of the University community even after formal retirement has occurred. The University is prepared to extend these library privileges, including interlibrary loans, to MUALA retirees by request on a case-by-case basis, subject to considerations of cost and administrative effort. A letter to this effect was sent by Mark Haley, Chief Human Resources Officer to Nick Ruest on November 30, 2011.

MUALA expressed thanks for this commitment from the University.

 

8. Post Doctoral Fellowships:

MUALA distributed a document to the University outlining its concerns about this issue. MUALA requested that this document as submitted be included in the minutes.

The University acknowledged receipt of the document but would not agree to include the document in the minutes. The University asked that such documents be sent out in advance of LMC meetings to facilitate an informed discussion.

ACTION: It was agreed between both Parties that the University would review the document and defer discussion to the next LMC meeting. 

9. Digital Experience Librarian Position:

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MUALA distributed a document to the University concerning this position. MUALA requested that this document as submitted be included in the minutes.

The University acknowledged receipt of the document but would not agree to include the document in the minutes. The University asked that such documents be sent out in advance of LMC meetings to facilitate an informed discussion.

ACTION: It was agreed between both Parties that the University would review the document and defer discussion to the next LMC meeting.

NEXT MEETING:
University to Chair: Liz Bayley, Location & Time: TBD