Faculty Relations Newsletter: July 2012

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Using Official E-mail Account

A reminder that personal email accounts should not be used for official University business. Instead your UBC account is to be used.

Section 1.2.2 of the UBC Information Security Manual states: “Third party email services are not appropriate for the transmission or storage of confidential information; confidential information must be stored in Canada and only in UBC owned or authorised environments. Specifically, email accounts used by University personnel, handling confidential information, must not be on third party services such as Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc.”

Reasons for this policy include:

  1. The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act requires us to protect personal information and store it in Canada.
  2. Commercially hosted e-mail accounts are less secure and since e-mails may contain valuable information owned by UBC there could be a heightened risk of unauthorized disclosure.

For more information please refer to the Privacy Memo found on the University Counsel website.
To find out what email address is listed on HRMS for your faculty members, please run HRMS Query 30.

Dates on Offer Letters

  1. Date of Acceptance: Please ensure that you provide the newly hired faculty candidate with sufficient time to accept and sign their offer letter within the “sign by” date. If the appointee’s signature is dated after the offer has expired, the employment contract will not be valid. In this case, the department will be asked to re-issue the offer letter and the appointee will be asked to sign again.
  2. Date of Letter: A reminder that for newly hired academics, departments need to make sure the offer letter is dated at a reasonable time after the job posting has closed.  Reasonable time would be long enough to allow for C.V. reviews and reference checks of potential candidates.

Postdoctoral Fellowship (PDF) Initiatives  

  1. PDF Faculty Coordinators are now in place in all faculties at UBCV, as well as in the College of Health Disciplines and CFIS. The Postdoctoral Fellowship Office will meet with the PDF Faculty Coordinators at a minimum semi-annually.
  2. Policy 61 revisions were approved by the Board of Governors in April 2012.

Policy 61 sets out the eligibility criteria and terms and conditions for PDF appointments. Changes made include:

  1. The extension of the window of the start of the PDF appointment from graduation from 3 years to 5 years.
  2.  The requirement of a year’s work before the PDF is eligible for paid maternity/parental and sick leave are now clearly set out. PDF leaves are conducted in accordance with Policy 86.
  3. It is formally recognized that the PDFs are in a category of their own – they are not faculty, staff or students.

New HRMS Job Code

A new job code (NBAM01) has been created with the job title of “Academic Administrator” to be used for administrative duties performed by a faculty member who is not in the formal position of Head or Director. An example of when to use this would be a faculty member performing Associate Head duties.  The new code will allow units to track funding in Position Management.

Points to Remember:

  1. Using this code does not indicate that one has a formal administrative position.
  2. Typically, the use of this code is for budget tracking purposes under the new Position Management system.
  3. Remuneration associated with the code must be honorary earnings.
  4.  Use of this code does not entitle the incumbent to administrative leave.
  5. This job code is for a stated term and not an ongoing appointment.
  6. Appointment of faculty members to additional duties with payment of an honorarium must be confirmed in writing.

Unpaid Leave – Qualifying for Study Leave

Periods of unpaid leave do not count towards service for the purpose of qualifying for a study leave. A faculty member must have completed at the University, since appointment or previous study leave, at least 4 years of active full-time service in appointments with review or tenured appointments of which at least two years shall have been in an eligible rank. Refer to Study leave eligibility for more information.

2012 Faculty Collective Bargaining

Collective bargaining continues. There have been 13 sessions so far with the last one on June 22. Bargaining has now adjourned for the summer and is scheduled to resume in October after the new term is underway.  This means that CPI, merit, and PSA increases will not be processed at this time.

Tips on How to Conduct an Investigation

If you are required to conduct an investigation be sure to familiarize yourself with and respect the requirements of University Policy 95 and the guidelines. At all times investigation must be conducted fairly.

Some things to keep in mind at each stage:

Initial/ Informal Investigation

  1. Conduct the investigation as privately as possible.
  2. Keep notes you deem appropriate. It is not necessary to take notes but may help to remind you of significant events.
  3. Be careful of the weight given to 2nd hand reports.
  4. Privacy rights of both the complainant and the person under investigation should be respected.

Formal Investigation

  1. The name of the Complainant may be disclosed with their written permission
  2. There must be a clear written complaint signed by the complainant.
  3. Careful notes must be kept.
  4. Confidentiality is important. The matter should only be discussed with UBC officials on a “need-to-know basis”.

When considering an investigation that could result in discipline call Faculty Relations: Mark Trowell (604) 822-9725 or Maureen Webb (604) 822-2180.

Pay from Payroll is in Canadian Dollars

Payroll advises that payments made through Payroll must be in Canadian dollars only. This applies to all employees, even for non-Canadians who arrive at UBC to teach under a short term appointment. These individuals are employees and therefore must be paid through Payroll. If they request to be paid in US dollars please inform them that it is only possible to pay them in Canadian funds.

Immigration Update

There have been recent changes at Citizenship & Immigration Canada (CIC) which may have some impact on faculty work permits.

In cases of Labour Market Opinion (LMO) exemptions, Faculty Relations can obtain a pre-approval from the Temporary Foreign Worker Unit (TFWU).  Until June 15th these pre-approvals were obtained from the Vancouver TWFU and normally had a turnaround time of about 1-2 weeks.  Commencing June 16th, all pre-approval requests must be submitted to a TWFU in Ontario, and we understand that the turnaround time may be as long as 30 days.

What to do if a faculty member is being sued?

Should a faculty member receive notice that he or she is being sued, they should immediately forward any legal documents received to the attention of the Office of the University Counsel. Faculty Association members may also wish to notify the Association. Legal documents often have important time limits, and failure to comply with these limits can have serious consequences. If a faculty member has been named as a defendant or a respondent in a lawsuit, Human Rights complaint, or other legal proceeding UBC will normally handle their defence and pay for all the costs and expenses as long as the two basic criteria are met:

  1. The faculty member acted reasonably, responsibly, and in good faith; and
  2. The faculty member acted within the course and scope of his or her employment with UBC.

Cases are assessed by the Office of the University Counsel and there may be some exceptions to this general approach, such as when the employee does not cooperate in the conduct of the defence, but such exceptions are extremely rare. Also, if information subsequently comes to light that reveals that the employee did not act in good faith or otherwise failed to meet the basic criteria set out above, the Office of the University Counsel may re-assess the case and may require reimbursement. If a faculty member has any concerns about a particular set of circumstances, they should speak with the Office of the University Counsel and consult the university counsel website under FAQ.

Electronic Forms

In 2010 Payroll embarked on a project to switch staff, student & faculty forms to electronic format. Staff & student appointments moved first to electronic format and unpaid faculty appointments followed shortly thereafter. We hope to begin using the system for paid faculty appointments later this year. Currently about 2/3 of units are using electronic forms, primarily for student and staff appointments. We would like to encourage units to switch to electronic forms for all unpaid faculty appointments. To find out about training and how to set your unit up on electronic forms please contact Kent Matthewson (kent@finance.ubc.ca, or 822-20149) at UBCV or Carri Lawrence (carri.lawrence@ubc.ca or 807-8810) at UBCO.

Lump Sum Payment

A Lump Sum of 1% was paid to regular faculty, librarians and program directors on June 30th. It will be paid to Sessionals Lecturers on September 30th. For regular faculty members the lump sum is based on the annual salary as of June 30th.

For Sessional Lecturers the lump sum is based on earnings between July 1st of the previous year and June 30th of the current year.

Who is Eligible to Vote on Promotion & Tenure Reviews in the 2012/13 academic year

Rank/Decision being considered Eligible member” (per Art. 5.04 of the faculty collective agreement)
Senior Instructor (Tenure and Promotion from Instructor) Tenured appointment; ranks of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, Professor,
Professor of Teaching;
and Senior Instructor
Professor of Teaching (Promotion from Senior Instructor which is a tenured position) Tenured appointments of Associate Professor,
Professor, and Professor of Teaching
Ranks in the professoriate –   Tenure decision Must be tenured at the same rank or higher rank in the professoriate. Members of the teaching stream do not vote.
Ranks in the professoriate – Promotion decision Must be at rank higher than the candidate except for Professors who vote on promotion to Professor. Members of the teaching stream do not vote.

UBC Okanagan

There is a separate Memorandum of Understanding that guides voting eligibility on the Okanagan campus. This MOA is currently being updated and will be available before the end of July on both the FR and the HR Okanagan webpage.

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