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UWOSA is an independent union representing over 1,000 administrative and technical staff at the University of Western Ontario. Our members work in every area of the University in a wide variety of roles. We are Academic Counselling Assistants, Admissions Coordinators, Animal Care Technicians, Booth Attendants, Computer Specialists, Dental Assistants, Drivers, Events Coordinators, Faculty Affairs Assistants, Graduate Coordinators, Horticultural Technicians, Laboratory Supervisors, Library Assistants, OSAP Coordinators, Prospect Researchers, Research Assistants, Residence Clerks, Schedulers, Secretaries, Storeskeepers, Technical Supervisors and Undergraduate Assistants (and so much more). Western wouldn't work without UWOSA members.

UWOSA Executive Vacancy - Membership Services Officer

Dear UWOSA Members,

Meg Perinpanayagam has been appointed as Vice President, and therefore is stepping down from the role of UWOSA's Membership Services Officer.

We thank Meg for her contributions as Membership Services Officer over the past few years -- the annual Luncheons, BBQs, Take-a-Break trips, charity drives and discount programs.

This leaves us with a vacancy on our Executive Committee. A new Membership Services Officer will be appointed for the electoral term ending April 30, 2016 at the June 17, 2015 meeting of the Stewards Council.

This is a position open to all members of UWOSA in good standing. If you would like to apply for the role, please email a brief bio (maximum 200 words) to mary.hay@uwosa.ca by June 10th to be submitted to Stewards Council.

Applicants will be expected to attend the Stewards Council meeting on Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 12:00 pm (location TBD) to provide a brief (5 minute) presentation to Council. After all presentations, a vote will be held to determine the new Membership Services Officer.

If you have any questions regarding the role, or the appointment process, please call ext 85089 or email mary.hay@uwosa.ca.

UWOSA Float Days - Reminder!

To all UWOSA members,

Just a reminder that, according to Article 21 – Paid Holidays of the Collective Agreement, all UWOSA members (Continuing, Sessional and Term) were granted two UWOSA floating holidays to be used by June 30, 2015.

Keep in mind that UWOSA floating holidays may not carry forward to the next year, so be sure to use them. If you have not already done so, please make arrangements with your supervisor to schedule a day (or two) off as soon as possible (and before June 30th)!

Effective July 1st, two new float days will be granted, to be used before June 30, 2016.

Reminder: UWOSA BBQ - Thursday, June 4, 2015

Join us for the Annual UWOSA BBQ
Thursday, June 4, 2015
12:00 - 1:00 p.m. OR 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.

This year's menu will be slightly different, as we will be featuring kebabs - if you are a vegetarian, please contact Great Hall Catering, so that they have a count for veggie kebabs. The menu will also include potato salad, sweet corn and make-your-own ice cream sundae with all the standard trimmings.

This year, we will be collecting donations for Habitat for Humanity Heartland, which builds simple, decent, affordable homes for low-income families in our community.

If you have specific dietary requirements, including vegetarian, please email Great Hall Catering with "UWOSA summer BBQ" in the subject line.

If you are unable to have dairy for dessert, there will be fresh fruit cups available. Please email Great Hall Catering with "UWOSA summer BBQ" in the subject line.

Ticket Distribution:
Wednesday, May 27th from 12:00-2:00 pm, UWOSA Office, 255 UCC
OR
Thursday, May 28th from 12:00-2:00 pm, UWOSA Office, 255 UCC

If you are unable to pick up your tickets, please email your Area Steward (see below for a list of Stewards) and ask for assistance.

List of UWOSA Stewards
ACVS, Robarts - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Arts & Humanities, Music - Chrisanthi Skalkos
Arts & Humanities, Music (alternate) - Alyssa Evetts
Dentistry - Leesa Couper
Education - Susanna Green
Engineering - Karen McDonald
Facilities Management - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Finance, HR, ITS, IPB - Lori Johnson
Health Sciences - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Housing & Hospitality Services - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Information & Media Studies - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Ivey Business - Clarissa Reynolds
Law - Duncan Archibald
Libraries - Evan Wiley
Libraries - David Murphy
Libraries (alternate)- Crystal Mills
Medicine - Basic Clinical - Jackie Windsor
Medicine - Basic Science - Meera Karajgikar
Medicine - Clinical - Lori Dengler
Medicine - Dean's Office - Maureen O'Connell
Retail Services - Lotte Huxley
Science - Cinthia Maclean
Science - Jennifer Heidenheim
Social Science - Mary Van de Ven
Student Services - Heather Guizzetti
VP External, VP Research- contact Meg Perinpanayagam

Regards,
Meg Perinpanayagam
Vice President

UWOSA BBQ - Thursday, June 4th

You Are Invited to the Annual UWOSA BBQ - Thursday, June 4, 2015 Great Hall, Somerville House Noon - 1:00 p.m. OR 1:00 - 2:00 p.m.

Join us on Thursday, June 4th as we celebrate summer with a UWOSA picnic in an pollen-free, air conditioned environment with plenty of seating for everyone.

This year's menu will be slightly different, as we will be featuring kebabs - so if you are a vegetarian, please contact Great Hall Catering, so that they have a count for veggie kebabs. The menu will also include potato salad, sweet corn and make your own ice cream sundae with all the standard trimmings. If you have specific dietary requirements, including vegetarian, please email Great Hall Catering with "UWOSA summer picnic" in the subject line.

If you are unable to have dairy for dessert, there will be fresh fruit cups available. Please email Great Hall Catering with "UWOSA summer picnic" in the subject line.

Ticket Distribution: Wednesday, May 27th from 12:00-2:00 pm OR Thursday, May 28th from 12:00-2:00 pm in the UWOSA Office, UCC room 255

If you are unable to pick up your tickets, please email your Area Steward (see below for a list of Stewards) and ask for assistance. If you do not have a Steward in your area, please email me at meg@uwosa.ca

This year, we will be collecting donations for Habitat for Humanity Heartland, which builds simple, decent, affordable homes with low-income families in our community.

If you have any questions, please email me at meg@uwosa.ca.

Regards,
Meg Perinpanayagam
Membership Services Officer

List of UWOSA Stewards

ACVS, Robarts - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Arts & Humanities, Music - Chrisanthi Skalkos
Arts & Humanities, Music (alternate) - Alyssa Evetts
Dentistry - Leesa Couper
Education - Susanna Green
Engineering - Karen McDonald
Facilities Management - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Finance, HR, ITS, IPB - Lori Johnson
Health Sciences - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Housing & Hospitality Services - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Information & Media Studies - contact Meg Perinpanayagam
Ivey Business - Clarissa Reynolds
Law - Duncan Archibald
Libraries - Evan Wiley
Libraries - David Murphy
Libraries (alternate)- Crystal Mills
Medicine - Basic Clinical - Jackie Windsor
Medicine - Basic Science - Meera Karajgikar
Medicine - Clinical - Lori Dengler
Medicine - Dean's Office - Maureen O'Connell
Retail Services - Lotte Huxley
Science - Cinthia Maclean
Science - Jennifer Heidenheim
Social Science - Mary Van de Ven
Student Services - Heather Guizzetti
VP External, VP Research- contact Meg Perinpanayagam

2015 Stratford Festival Discounts for UWOSA Members

Hello UWOSA Members,

Please go to www.uwosa.ca "Members Only" area for some great discounts on upcoming productions at Stratford Festival for May and June.

If you have forgotten your password, please contact Mary Hay for a new one.

Regards,
Meg

--
Meghan Perinpanayagam
Membership Services Officer
UWOSA

Call for Nominations - UWOSA Vice President

Just a reminder that the office of UWOSA Vice President is vacant, as Boun Thai has assumed the role of UWOSA President.

This is a full-time release position, open to all members of UWOSA in good standing.

The appointment of the UWOSA Vice President will be made at the Stewards Council meeting on Wednesday, May 20, 2015 at 12:00pm in the Social Science Centre, room 9420.

If you are interested in the role, please forward a brief bio to UWOSA's Business Manager, Mary Hay before May 13 at 9:00am.

You will be expected to attend the meeting on May 20 and to provide a short (maximum 5 minute) presentation on your candidacy for the role before the members of Stewards Council vote.

If you have any questions regarding the role, or the appointment process, please call ext 85089 or email mary.hay@uwosa.ca.

It is UWOSA's turn to visit the Columbia Employee Store

Hello everyone,

Please visit the "Member's Only" area at our UWOSA website
(www.uwosa.ca) to print off your invitation to visit the Columbia Employee Store between Thursday, May 14th and Sunday, June 14th. Please remember that you must bring the printed invitation with you (tablets or phone images will not be accepted at the door).

You may bring up to 4 family members or friends with you when you shop, however, the invitation is not transferable. You must bring you UWO I.D. card with you.

If you have any questions, please email me at meg@uwosa.ca.

Happy Shopping!

Meg Perinpanayagam
Membership Services Officer
UWOSA

Announcement: UWOSA Presidency

Dear UWOSA members,

I am writing to let you know that I have been offered a position in the Faculty of Social Science which, after careful consideration, I have decided to accept. Accordingly, I am resigning the office of President of UWOSA effective May 1, 2015.

I am grateful to have had the opportunity to work here in the UWOSA office for the last three years with our dedicated Stewards, Executive, and committee members, on behalf of all UWOSA members. I will continue to serve UWOSA as Past President in an advisory capacity at Stewards Council and Executive meetings, in order to provide continuity.

In accordance with our Constitution, Vice President Boun Thai shall become President of UWOSA on May 1, 2015. An appointment for the vacant position of Vice President will be held at our Stewards Council meeting on Wednesday, May 20, 2015 at 12:00pm in Social Science room 9420.

If you are interested in the Vice President position, please put forward your intention and a brief bio to UWOSA's Business Manager, Mary Hay before May 13 at 9:00am. Please plan to attend the meeting on May 20 to give a short (5 minutes maximum) presentation on your candidacy for the role before the members of Stewards Council vote.

Sincerely,
Karen

____________________________
Karen Foullong
President
University of Western Ontario Staff Association (UWOSA)
University Community Centre (UCC) room 255
London, Ontario N6A 3K7

Phone: 519-661-2111 ext. 85041

Email: karen@uwosa.ca

Questions for Town Hall Meetings

Dear UWOSA members

As you know, President Chakma will be conducting a series of town hall meetings across the campus with staff, faculty and students. He has promised to engage us and to listen to our concerns.

In preparing for these town hall meetings we thought it would be helpful to present to you some of the information that came forth during our recent survey. There are so many topics that were brought to light through your responses, however, some common threads did emerge. Hopefully this list of sample questions will get you thinking about what topics concern you and help formulate questions to ask Dr. Chakma when you meet with him. We would also invite you to share what you learn at these meetings with the UWOSA Executive Team, so that we can move forward with as much information as possible.

Budget-Related
- In our department, budget cutbacks have meant that we are now ___ [rationing chalk to professors, only having garbage emptied once every two weeks, no longer having annual team-building events, using office chairs that are falling apart, still saving items to floppy disks, have had to give up our lunch room to make way for more graduate student offices, have no blinds or curtains for windows, have not had the windows cleaned or walls painted in over five years] ___. Will that change in the future? What can you do to initiate this change?
- [Undergraduate] enrollment in our department has increased by [300] students in the last [three] years and yet no additional people have been hired to assist with their needs. Why was there no talk of hiring increased staff when there was talk about enrolling more students?
- The upgrades to equipment in our area have been near non-existent. Do you have any plans to provide additional financial support to our area for ___ [upgrading computers, printers, photocopiers, office supplies] ___

Pay-related
- I have worked at Western for __[10]__ years. During that time, inflation has gone up significantly more than the pay raises we get from year-to-year; my rent increase is more each year than my pay increase; the money that I earn can no longer go as far as it used to. What are your long-term plans with respect to salary increases for Western’s front-line staff?
- We understand that there have been on-going pay equity negotiations for several years now. What is your understanding of the delays in resolving equal pay for the equal work done by both women and men?

Work Load & Morale
- In my area, I have noticed an increase in the stress levels due to many factors, one of which was a series of layoffs in 2009. On top of the layoffs, we have also had people retire whose positions have not been filled. Every person I can think of is doing considerably more work than they were doing in 2009 and it feels as though we are working on a skeleton staff. Are there plans to bring staffing levels back up to an adequate level where we can provide support to our area without feeling burnt out at the end of the day?
- The increased workload and decreased budget in my area has resulted in a large decrease in morale and an increase in stress. What ideas and plans do you have to work towards an increased morale for workers?
- I understand that under your leadership, we have achieved one of the highest student retention rates and graduation rates in Canada, as well as a 94% employment rate within two-years after graduation, however, it is not my understanding that the same can be said for faculty and staff. What plans do you have to make Western a better place to work?
- I feel as though I can relate a bit better to you after the events of the last few weeks. You’ve had the opportunity to experience what it is like to live in a fear that you may lose your job. For reasons beyond my control, I have experienced the same feelings for the last __ [six] ___ years. This really weighs on people and I am wondering if you have plans to address this reason for low morale in many workers here at Western.
- We spent a lot of time a couple of months ago completing the We Speak survey. What follow up has their been or will their be from your office about the concerns those results raised?

Results of April 17 Special Senate Meeting

Dear UWOSA members,

At today’s special meeting of Western’s Senate, the votes of non-confidence in both President Chakma and the Chair of the Board of Governors, Chirag Shah, did not pass. UWOSA is disappointed that the majority of University Senate members appear to support the governing policy of this institution. Given the news we have heard over the past few weeks, we had hoped that the Senate would have recognized an opportunity to influence a substantial change in Western’s priorities and governing policies.

Nevertheless, our work is not done. UWOSA hopes that Dr. Chakma was sincere in his message of taking "concrete steps to engage our staff, and employee group leaders, whose work is so critical to the success of our academic enterprise." We were sincere in our open letter that we look forward to our conversation with Dr. Chakma to change Western for the better.

Yours sincerely,
The UWOSA Executive Committee

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