Part 8

Part 8

Article 65 — Program Discontinuance

 

65.1 This section applies only where the discontinuance of a course of study, program, Faculty, School or Department may result in the lay-off of Members. Sections 65.13 – 65.23 will only be invoked after the process outlined in sections 65.6 – 65.12 has been completed.

Role of Senate and Board

65.2 The Parties recognize the authority of the Senate and the Board under the University Act with regard to the establishment and discontinuance of a course of study, program, Department, School or Faculty.

65.3 The President of the University, a Vice-President, Associate Vice-President or Dean will not recommend to Senate that a course of study, program, Department, School or Faculty be discontinued unless there are bona fide academic reasons for making such a recommendation.

Security of Employment

65.4 Where the discontinuance of a course of study, program, Department, School or Faculty may affect the security of employment of Members, the University will endeavour to maintain the employment of Members whenever possible, recognizing the following:

65.4.1 the importance of tenure as a protection of academic freedom;

65.4.2 the long-term commitment made by Members to an academic career at the University; and

65.4.3 a Member’s ability to contribute to the University in many ways.

65.5 If, under these provisions, the Board of Governors approves the discontinuance of a program that is anticipated to result in lay-offs of Members, a labour adjustment committee will be constituted by the Association and the University and the procedures of sections 65.17 – 65.20 will be followed.

Proposal for Discontinuance

65.6 Before the President of the University, a Vice-President, Associate Vice-President or Dean submits to Senate a proposal for discontinuance under section 65, a copy of the proposal must be sent to the President of the Association, and the Members in the affected Academic Unit.

65.7 The written proposal must contain:

65.7.1 a detailed statement of the reasons for such a proposal (paramount);

65.7.2 details of the consequences of the proposal with regard to the employment status of Members including any proposed voluntary transfers of Members to other Academic Units;

65.7.3 any proposed voluntary transfers to academic administrative positions;

65.7.4 any proposed voluntary retirements or resignations;

65.7.5 any proposed voluntary reduction in the FTE of appointments;

65.7.6 any other measures that have been made available to Members before considering the need to lay off Members; and

65.7.7 the proposed lay-off of Members.

Review Committee

65.8 Before deciding whether or not to forward the proposal to Senate, the President will, within 15 working days of sending a copy of the proposal to the President of the Association, establish a review committee that is advisory to the President. The review committee will consist of five members: two nominated by the President of the Association, two nominated by the President of the University and one member jointly named by the two Presidents. The committee will select its own chair. The members must have relevant academic expertise and suitable qualifications for the reviewing task. No member of the committee will be a member of the unit that would be affected by the proposal for discontinuance.

65.9 The University will cooperate with the committee by making available to it all relevant data and information, and providing it with appropriate and essential resources.

65.10 The review committee will provide all interested persons or groups with an opportunity to make submissions with regard to all aspects of the proposal referred to in section 65.7, and submit its report containing its comments and advice with regard to the proposal within 40 working days of its appointment. The report may contain dissenting views in whole or in part or with respect to any specific issue.

65.11 With regard to the course of study, program, Faculty, School or Department proposed for discontinuance, the committee will address the following questions in its report:

65.11.1 whether there are bona fide academic reasons for the proposed discontinuance. In making this assessment, the review committee will consider:

65.11.1.1 the quality of teaching and/or research;

65.11.1.2 any relevant academic reviews either internal or external (internal academic accreditation reports, or evaluations by other professional or academic bodies);

65.11.1.3 success in placement of graduates in graduate programs or occupations; and

65.11.1.4 any other criteria identified in the proposal or expressly considered relevant by the Committee;

65.11.2 the relationship of the course of study, program, Faculty, School or Department proposed for discontinuance with other programs or units within the University;

65.11.3 whether the course of study, program, Faculty, School, or Department proposed for discontinuance has attracted an acceptable enrolment in the past four years (unless a shorter period of initial review was specified by the Senate and Board of Governors at the time of the approval of a program or course of study) and, if not, whether this situation is likely to continue;

65.11.4 whether any academic deficiencies can be remedied within three years and, if so, how;

65.11.5 any other questions the review committee deems appropriate; and

65.11.6 the reasonableness of the proposals and the consequences described under section 65.7.4.

65.12 The report of the review committee will be delivered to the President. Copies of the report will be delivered concurrently to the Members in the affected unit, the relevant Dean and Chair, and the President of the Association, who will have 20 working days to consider the report and deliver a response in writing to the President of the University.

President’s Recommendation

65.13 Following the receipt of the report of the review committee, and the responses to it, the President of the University will determine whether or not to submit a proposal for discontinuance to the Senate Planning Committee for consideration and recommendation to Senate.

65.14 If the President submits a proposal for discontinuance to Senate, the report of the review committee and any responses to it will accompany the proposal.

Association’s Submission to the Board

65.15 If, on the recommendation of the President, the Senate makes a recommendation to the Board of Governors that a course of study, program, Department, School or Faculty be discontinued, the President of the University will, within 20 working days, invite the Association to make a written submission to the Board.

Board of Governors’ Decision

65.16 If the Board of Governors directs that a program be discontinued, the President of the University will notify the President of the Association and they or their designates will appoint a labour adjustment committee to follow the procedures of sections 65.17 – 65.21.

Labour Adjustment Process

65.17 Where a program is to be discontinued and lay-offs are anticipated as a result, within ten working days of the decision of the Board of Governors, the President of the University and the President of the Association, or their designates, will appoint a labour adjustment committee, consisting of an equal number of appointees by each.

65.18 The labour adjustment committee will meet within 5 working days of its appointment and will review every proposed lay-off caused by the program discontinuance. The committee will first canvass Members who are proposed to be laid off as to whether any would be willing to take a reduced appointment or to retire in order to avoid lay-offs. For remaining Members who would otherwise be laid off, the committee will use its best efforts to determine an appropriate transfer to another unit within the University of each such Member. The committee may recommend that the University provide additional training for up to two years of any Member who requires such training in order to accept an offered transfer and the Member will be entitled to undertake that training without payment of tuition or fees to the University.

65.19 The committee will provide a report to the President of the University and the President of the Association outlining its deliberations and recommendations for transfers to other units.

65.20 Members to be transferred will retain their rank, salaries, seniority and years accrued toward study leave in their new units and will not be transferred without their consent. Units to whom transfers are to be made will not unreasonably refuse to accept a transfer arising from this process.

65.21 The University has the right, in its sole discretion, to offer enhanced voluntary severance packages to any Member to avoid a lay-off. Members dealing with an offer of an enhanced voluntary severance package are entitled to the assistance of the Faculty Association.

Members Not Transferred

65.22 If, after the labour adjustment committee has made its report, there are still Members who have not taken voluntary retirement, or voluntary severance or have not been transferred to another unit, those Members will continue in their normal positions in their Faculty or the Libraries for a period of 1 (one) year at their regular salary. During this year, in the case of a Faculty Member, the Dean will assign teaching duties where possible, consistent with the Standard of Duties and Responsibilities of the Unit.

65.23 During this year, the Member, the Dean or University Librarian and a representative of the Faculty Association will continue to work towards finding an acceptable permanent transfer of the Member within the University.

65.24 If at the end of the year, the Member has not accepted a transfer or taken voluntary retirement or voluntary severance, the Member will be laid off. Notice, severance and recall rights of the Member will be as provided for in sections 66.36 – 66.47.

Costs of Committee

65.25 The cost of the review committee established under this section will be borne by the University.

 

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Article 66 — Financial Exigency

 

66.1 The Parties agree that the first duty of the University is to ensure that its academic priorities remain paramount, particularly with regard to the quality of instruction and research, and the preservation of academic freedom. Any lay-off for budgetary reasons of tenured or tenure-track Members, of Assistant or Associate Teaching Professors holding continuing appointments, or of Librarian/Archivist Members on confirmed or probationary appointments will occur only during a state of financial exigency declared by the Board of Governors under this section.

66.2 For the purposes of this Agreement, a state of financial exigency occurs when the University’s budget forecasts, prepared by using generally accepted accounting principles, project substantial and recurring financial deficits that will affect the continued functioning of the University as a whole and that will persist for two years or more unless there is a reduction in expenditures.

66.3 The use of the term “accounting” in sections 66.2, 66.5, and other subsections of section 66 includes future predicted costs.

Declaration of Financial Exigency

66.4 When the Board of Governors considers that a financial exigency exists within the meaning of section 66.2, the Board of Governors may declare a financial exigency and specify the required base budget reduction expressed in dollars. Where such a declaration is made, the President of the University will give notice of the declaration to the Association within five working days stating that the Board of Governors intends to act in accordance with the procedures set out below.

66.5 Within five working days of giving notice of a declaration that a financial exigency exists, the Board of Governors will forward to the Association all financial documentation upon which the Board of Governors based its declaration of financial exigency. The documentation will be sufficiently detailed that by using generally accepted accounting principles a state of financial exigency can be evaluated.

66.6 After a declaration of financial exigency has been made, the Board of Governors agrees in the recall period, not to make new appointments in any Faculty or the University Libraries where the holder of such appointment would be represented by the Association under this Agreement unless all recall rights under this section have been exhausted; and agrees that if it creates and fills any new academic administrative positions that are described in section 7.2 in addition to those that are in existence at the date of the declaration of financial exigency, the University will recall a Member or Members with combined salaries that are equivalent to at least 1.25 times the salary of each new academic administrative appointment. Where this figure is not sufficient to pay the full salary of the person being recalled under this provision, the figure will be rounded up to include the full salary of the person being recalled.

66.7 Nothing in this section prevents the University from renewing the appointment of a person holding a position described in section 7.2 or making a new appointment to a position described in section 7.2.

66.8 Lay-off of Members under this section will occur only after a state of financial exigency has been declared by the Board of Governors in accordance with the procedures contained in this section; efforts to alleviate the financial crisis by economies in all other segments of the budget have been undertaken; and all reasonable means of improving the University’s revenues have been exhausted.

66.9 No Member will be laid-off, terminated, or otherwise penalized with respect to terms and conditions of employment and/or rights or privileges relating to employment for financial reasons, except in accordance with this section. However, this section does not preclude the non-renewal of Members on limited-term appointments, or lay-offs, where the conditions and procedures of section 65 have been satisfied.

Financial Commission

66.10 Within 15 days of the notice specified in section 66.4 above, the Board will establish a financial commission consisting of five (5) members, two (2) of whom will be appointed by the Board of Governors, two (2) of whom will be appointed by the Association, and the fifth of whom will be an independent chair selected by the other four (4) members of the commission. In the event the other members of the commission cannot agree on a chair, the chair will be named by a Justice of the Supreme Court of British Columbia upon application being made by the Parties to the Court. No member of the financial commission will be a government official.

66.11 The financial commission will review the material on the state of financial exigency and either verify to the Board of Governors the existence of such a financial exigency or report that such a financial exigency does not exist.

66.12 The University will co-operate with the financial commission in its deliberations and will provide all documentation necessary to establish to the satisfaction of the financial commission whether a state of financial exigency exists within the meaning of this section.

66.13 The financial commission will establish its own procedures; however, all decisions of the financial commission will be by majority vote of the members of the financial commission.

66.14 The financial commission will invite submissions on the University’s financial condition and consider:

66.14.1 whether the University’s financial position constitutes a state of financial exigency as defined in section 66.2;

66.14.2 whether a reduction in the number of Members and/or a reduction in the salaries and benefits of Members is a reasonable way to effect a cost-saving, given the primacy of academic goals within the University;

66.14.3 whether other means of achieving savings have been explored and utilized;

66.14.4 whether every reasonable effort has been made to secure further assistance from the provincial government and to improve the University’s revenue position by other means, including borrowing with the approval of the government as required by the University Act;

66.14.5 whether revenue estimates from enrolment projections are consistent with any proposed reduction in the complement of Members;

66.14.6 whether all other reasonable means of reducing the complement of Members including voluntary early retirement, voluntary resignation, voluntary reduced appointment status, and transfer have been considered and implemented; and

66.14.7 any other matters that it considers relevant to the proposed financial exigency.

66.15 The financial commission will respond to each category listed above in its report.

66.16 The financial commission will make its report to the Board and the Association within three months of its appointment. If the financial commission verifies that there is a state of financial exigency, it will recommend the required base-budget reduction expressed in dollars. It will also recommend the portion of that reduction that would be achieved by laying off Members, or by reducing expenditures on Members’ salaries and benefits.

66.17 When the report of the financial commission verifying that a financial exigency exists is made known to the Association, the Association will invite Members to recommend proposals for the use of voluntary measures to bring about savings in expenditures for Members’ salaries and benefits.

Renegotiation Period

66.18 In the event of a declaration of financial exigency, if either Party serves notice to the other no later than 7 working days after the Board of Governors has declared financial exigency, notwithstanding any provisions of this Agreement or other Agreement between the Parties, the Parties will attempt in good faith to renegotiate provisions of the Agreement bearing directly on salaries and benefits, or reach other mutually acceptable emergency methods of reducing expenditures that could avert lay-offs or decrease the number of lay-offs, including a proposal for reduction in salaries proportionate to the required cut, or lay-off days each year during the period of financial exigency. The negotiations will be completed within 40 calendar days after the first meeting unless the period is extended by mutual agreement.

66.19 Any agreement reached under these provisions will be applicable only if the financial commission verifies, under section 66.11, that there is a financial exigency and will come into effect only after such a declaration is verified.

66.20 If the financial commission verifies, under section 66.11, that there is a financial exigency, and if there is no agreement under section 66.18 on measures to reduce expenditures, the University may proceed with lay-offs to achieve the necessary reductions in accordance with the procedures set out below.

66.21 If the financial commission finds that no financial exigency exists in the sense of section 66.2, the Board of Governors will be precluded from invoking any of the provisions of this section again in the same fiscal year, and any agreement under section 66.18 will be considered null and void unless both parties subsequently agree that it is to their mutual advantage to proceed with such an agreement.

Lay-off Procedures

66.22 Members who are to be laid off under this section will be provided with written notice of the reasons. Lay-offs under this section will not be treated or recorded as dismissals for cause.

66.23 A separate Faculty Member retention list (MRL) will be prepared for each Faculty. Each MRL will consist of three categories and the Members in each category will be rank-ordered from top to bottom as provided in this section. The categories are in rank order:

66.23.1 Members holding regular academic appointments who on the date of declaration of financial exigency have received at least one merit increment in the preceding five salary evaluations ordered in accordance with the amalgamated ranked list (ARL) as specified in section 66.26.

66.23.2 Members holding regular academic appointments on the date of declaration of financial exigency, who have received no merit increments in the preceding five salary evaluations, ordered by decreasing years and months of service to the University as a regular Faculty Member.

66.23.3 Members who are on Limited-Term appointments ordered by decreasing years and months of service to the University.

66.24 A Librarian Member retention list (MRL) will be prepared for the University Libraries. The MRL will consist of three categories and the Members in each category will be rank-ordered from top to bottom as provided in this section. The categories are in rank order:

66.24.1 Librarians holding confirmed or probationary regular appointments who, on the date of the declaration of financial exigency, have received at least one merit increment in the preceding five salary evaluations ordered in accordance with the amalgamated ranked list (ARL) as specified in section 66.26.

66.24.2 Librarians holding confirmed or probationary regular appointments who on the date of the declaration of financial exigency, have received no merit increments in the preceding five salary evaluations ordered by decreasing years and months of service to the University as a Librarian.

66.24.3 Librarians who are on Limited-Term appointments ordered by decreasing years and months of service to the University.

66.25 Within each of the categories identified in sections 66.23 and 66.24, two lists will be created (List A and List B) which will be combined into one amalgamated ranked list using the following procedure:

66.25.1 List A (Average Merit Increments)

66.25.1.1 The Members will be listed on List A by descending order of their average merit increments determined in the following manner:

66.25.1.2 Except as provided in section 66.25.2, add the total number of salary merit increments awarded to each Member divided by the number of salary evaluations over which those Merit Increments are accumulated where the number of salary evaluations to be included is the smaller of the preceding 10 salary evaluations; and the number of salary evaluations for the Member since his or her first appointment at the University.

66.25.1.3 Members with the same merit increment average will be ordered by decreasing years and months of service to the University in their respective appointment categories. If ties still remain, those Members will be rank-ordered by a drawing of names conducted by the University Secretary in the presence of the President of the University and the President of the Association or their delegates.

66.25.2 List A Ranking for Members who have been on maternity or parental leave, adoption leave, sick or special leave, or on long-term disability

66.25.2.1 Any Member who has been on sick leave, special leave, maternity, parental, or adoption leave, or long-term disability during the salary adjustment evaluation period as defined in section 66.25.1 for a period of fifteen continuous weeks or more will be entitled to exclude from the calculation in section 66.25.1 any salary evaluation for the year or years in which the period (s) of leave or longterm disability occurred.

66.25.2.2 Where any Member excludes one or more evaluations in accordance with section 66.25.2.1, the Member’s merit increment average will be determined by adding the total number of Merit Increments awarded for evaluations not excluded by the Member and dividing by the number of salary evaluations still remaining in consideration.

66.25.3 List B (Seniority)

66.25.3.1 The Members will be listed on List B by descending order of years and months of service to the University excluding any periods of leave without salary.

66.25.3.2 Members with the same years and months of service will be ordered by decreasing merit increment average. If ties still remain, those Members will be rank-ordered by a drawing of names conducted by the University Secretary in the presence of the President of the University and the President of the Association or their delegates.

66.26 A single amalgamated list (ARL) for each Faculty and the Libraries will be formed from Lists A and B as follows:

66.26.1 Names will be taken alternately from Lists A and B in top-down order.

66.26.2 The first name added to the ARL will be the top name on List A.,/p>

66.26.3 Once a name is placed on the ARL, it will be crossed off the other list.

66.26.4 The process described in sections 66.26.1 through 66.26.3 continues until all Members in the category have been listed on the ARL.

66.27 The total base budget reduction across the University required to address a financial exigency to be met by the lay-off of Members will be expressed as a percentage of the total University base salary budget of Members. The lay-off base-budget reduction required of each Faculty and the University Libraries will be that same percentage of each unit’s total base salary budget of Members.

66.28 Members will be selected for lay-off from the MRL of each Faculty and the University Library (under sections 66.23 and 66.24), starting from the bottom until the unit’s lay-off base-budget reduction is achieved.

66.29 If the full salary of the last Member selected for lay-off is not required to meet the unit’s lay-off base-budget reduction, that Member will be offered a reduced appointment that reflects the amount of the Member’s salary that is not required to meet the unit’s lay-off base-budget reduction.

Alternative Positions

66.30 After the selection of the Members who are to be laid off, but prior to the implementation of such lay-offs, the University will bring alternative positions elsewhere in the University to the attention of such Members.

66.31 With regard to alternative academic appointments in another unit to which this Agreement applies the provisions of this Agreement regarding transfer of appointments apply, but the consent of the Academic Unit to which the Member is being transferred will not be unreasonably withheld.

66.32 A Faculty Member whose transfer to another Academic Unit is approved under section 29 retains recall rights to their former position in accordance with sections 66.40 – 66.48 and their accrued years of service eligibility for study leave.

66.33 With regard to alternative positions that are governed by a collective agreement the competition for such positions will be governed by the terms of such collective agreement; and if a Member is the successful candidate for such a position, the salary and benefits for the position will be governed by such collective agreement; the Member retains recall rights to their former position in accordance with sections 66.40 – 66.48; and if a Member is recalled to that former position, years of service eligibility for study leave that accrued prior to lay-off are retained.

66.34 Where a Member has the required academic credentials and other qualifications for an alternative position and the position is offered to the Member and the Member accepts the position conditional upon upgrading skills, the Member will be given an opportunity to upgrade their skills by enrolling in courses or programs specified and offered by the University without payment of fees or tuition.

66.35 During the recall period stated in section 66.40, a Member on lay-off who is admitted to a University degree or diploma program upon satisfying the admission standards of the program, may enroll in a maximum of 30 units of courses at the University, where enrolment space is available, upon payment of half of the normal tuition or fees.

66.36 Notwithstanding anything in this section, the University may in its sole discretion offer an enhanced voluntary severance package to any Member for the purpose of avoiding a lay-off. Members dealing with an offer for an enhanced voluntary severance package are entitled to the assistance of the Association.

Lay-off Notice

66.37 For each Member holding a Limited-Term Faculty or Librarian appointment who is selected for layoff, the University will provide the lesser of:

66.37.1 six months written notice of the date of lay-off; or

66.37.2 six months salary in lieu of notice; or

66.37.3 notice that the University will honour all contractual obligations to the Member; however, no subsequent reappointment will be offered.

66.38 For each Member holding an appointment as an Assistant Teaching Professor or Associate Teaching Professor (whether continuing or not) or Artist-in-Residence, an appointment with tenure or with eligibility for tenure, or a probationary or confirmed Librarian appointment who is selected for lay-off, the University will, at the discretion of the University, provide either:

66.38.1 one month’s notice of lay-off for each year of service in the University in any of these appointment classifications, which will be not less than 6 months notice to a maximum of 24 months notice; or

66.38.2 one month’s salary in lieu of notice for each year of service in the University in any of these appointment classifications, which will be not less than 6 months salary to a maximum of 24 months of salary.

66.39 Under this section, all payments in lieu of salary will be based on the individual’s annual salary at the date of lay-off.

Recall Rights

66.40 Members who are laid off, or who accept a transfer to a position outside of their Academic Unit, will have, for a period of three years from the date of lay-off, a right of recall with regard to any academic appointment position in their former Academic Unit where the incumbent is represented by the Association and for which the laid-off Member is qualified, unless the University can substantiate that the position is so specialized that it cannot be filled by a laid-off Member.

66.41 Where Members are to be recalled to a Faculty or the University Libraries, they will be recalled in the reverse order in which they were laid off. The University will send the first notice of recall to the last Member laid off from that Faculty or the University Libraries (as the case may be) according to the MRL. If such Member does not exercise this right of recall in accordance with this section, the University will send a notice of recall to the next Member on the MRL and so on until all Members on lay-off from the Faculty or the University Libraries (as the case may be) have been sent a notice of recall.

66.42 The University will send a notice of recall to the Member’s last known address by registered mail and by email to the Member’s UVic email address. It will be the Member’s obligation to keep the University informed of their current address.

66.43 In addition, each Member who is laid off will have a right of first refusal for any Faculty Member or Librarian position covered by this Agreement and for which the Member is qualified that will be filled during the recall period.

66.44 After all recall rights have been exhausted, a Member who has voluntarily accepted a reduced appointment during the state of financial exigency may request that this appointment be restored to a full appointment.

66.45 Individuals who are recalled pursuant to section 66.40 have 30 days from the date of mailing of the notice of recall in which to accept such recall offer, and a reasonable period, not to exceed six months, to terminate alternative employment and take up the offered post. Failure to accept recall is deemed to be a resignation. Members on lay-off who are subsequently recalled will repay any portion of the allowance pursuant to sections 66.37 – 66.39 that exceeds the salary they would have received, had they continued to occupy their normal positions in the University.

66.46 Each Member who is recalled to a position that is not within their original Academic Unit retains a full right of recall for the period specified in section 66.39 for any opening in his/her original Academic Unit.

66.47 In a state of financial exigency, University buildings may be closed or assigned to other functions and normal services may be reduced or eliminated. Subject to the conditions of this section and within the limitations existing during a state of financial exigency, Members who are laid off will be permitted reasonable access to University facilities, including office and laboratory space, as and when available, and reasonable access to library and computer services, for the purpose of maintaining their scholarly activities until alternative academic employment is secured, or their recall rights expire or recall is refused, whichever first occurs. For Library resources and University-wide computer network access (“Netlink ID” or equivalent facilities), cards and user ID’s will continue to function insofar as is reasonably possible. Permission to use other University facilities under this section requires a proposal by the Member that describes the proposed use of University facilities. Approval of a proposal is contingent upon Workers Compensation Act and insurance coverage for the proposed use of University facilities. With regard to the use of University facilities, such as laboratory space, which would not be open to members of the public, a waiver may be required from the Member that releases the University from liability with regard to any injuries that may be sustained by the Member during her or his use of such University facilities.

66.48 During the recall period, the University will provide reasonable assistance to laid-off Members by permitting them to enroll in courses or programs offered by the University without payment of fees or tuition, for the purpose of upgrading their skills in order to assume the responsibilities of an alternative position that has been offered to a Member and for which the Member already has the required academic credentials or other qualifications.

66.49 While a Member is on lay-off under the provisions of this section, the University will not contribute towards payment of benefit premiums but will facilitate continuance of any coverage to the extent that it may be available and if desired by the Member who will pay all the applicable premiums.

Cost of Financial Commission

66.50 The cost of the financial commission established under this section will be borne by the University.

 

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