Faculty association to finally have a new CBA?

Previous agreement expired March 2012, but TRU faculty will vote on a new deal soon

Mike Davies, Editor-in-Chief Ω

The new CBA is yet to be ratified, but there's been a lot of work on both sides to reach the tentative agreement. Sebastien Wiertz/Flickr Commons

The new CBA is yet to be ratified, but there’s been a lot of work on both sides to reach the tentative agreement. Sebastien Wiertz/Flickr Commons

After 10 months of negotiations, TRU and its faculty association (TRUFA) have finally reached a tentative deal that will see faculty members under contract again through to March 2014. The deal will now be put before membership for ratification.

The faculty’s last collective bargaining agreement (CBA) expired Mar. 31, 2012, and they have been working under the terms of that agreement since that time without a new agreement in place while this round of negotiations occurred.

A press release from TRU states that the agreement put forward “is consistent with the provincial cooperative gains mandate and settlements within the B.C. post-secondary and public sectors.”

Associate VP of human resources Denis Powers said that while he cannot comment on what the new deal entails as far as gains for the faculty, the new CBA is not merely a continuation of the old contract and it “will have retroactive aspects,” meaning the faculty will see the benefits of the deal that would have been in place all along, if the agreement had started in April 2012 at the expiry of the previous CBA.

Powers also acknowledged that the new deal, once ratified, would expire next March, so “it will likely not be too many months before we begin bargaining anew for the next CBA.”

When asked for comment on whether he expects the current proposal will again expire before a new one is in place as the last one did, causing the faculty to work without a deal in place, Powers would only add, “One can never predict how long it will take to get a deal. We began bargaining for this deal back in January of this year and met on numerous occasions over the past 10 months.

“CBAs can be complex documents and protracted negotiations are not unusual. Both bargaining teams worked diligently to arrive at this settlement,” Powers said.

According to the TRU press release, if the 819 members of the faculty association ratify the agreement, it will then be presented to the TRU board of governors for final approval before coming into effect.

The Omega will have updates as they become available.