Dear Members, 
We would like to congratulate the following new officers for 2014-2015. We look forward to an exciting new year! 

· President – Diana Samu-Visser 
· Administration Chair - Mary Deminion 
· Finance Chair – Abul Fahad Akon 
· Communications Chair – Amanda Vyce 
· Activism Chair – Atle Mikkola Kjøsen 
· Arts and Humanities Chief Steward – Jaime Brenes Reyes
· Biological Sciences Chief Steward – Asma Aktar 
· Physical Science Chief Steward - Ashrafur Rahman 
· Social Science Chief Steward - Christopher Schultz 
· Ombudsperson – Jubayer Chowdhury 

PSAC 610 Officer Elections for the 2014-2015 academic year took place on Monday, April 7 at 5:30pm. The Chief Returning Officer for PSAC Local 610 certifies that the above mentioned elections were conducted according to the Local’s Bylaws. Nominations were received and accepted for all positions except Post-Doctoral Steward. This position remains vacant. 


Dear Members,
The PSAC Local 610
Officer Elections are TODAY at 5:30 in room SEB 1059 (Spencer Engineering Building)! Please come early to register. 

In the event that childcare is not available, membership are always more than welcome to have their children accompany them to union functions and should not hesitate to do so.

Please vote for your officers and join us after the elections for a celebration!


Check out the recent article in the Western's Gazette:

Low TA wages mean some turn to food bank


PSAC with Banner Final


Membership Survey

Every year, the union puts out a membership survey to gain a better understanding of the issues and needs of graduate student teaching assistants at Western. The direction the union takes is directly influenced by the desires of the membership, so please let your voice be heard.

Complete the survey here. It should take no longer than 5-10 minutes.

 

PSAC Local 610 Scholarship Applications Due March 31st

PSAC Local 610 awards multiple scholarships once a year to members who demonstrate excellence in the areas of community involvement, academic achievement, and outstanding contributions to research.

For more information on these scholarships, or to download the application forms, please visit the PSAC Local 610 website. Or email the Administration Chair. Applications are due by the end of March.


Reminders:


Midterm Meetings with Course Supervisors

As per the Collective Agreement, course supervisors are required to initiate a review of activities and hours with all of their TAs at the mid-point of the semester. This is just a reminder that in order to prevent overwork, it is important that you review your workload with your course supervisor. Any changes to your duties or hours must be mutually agreed upon by TAs and course supervisors.

Track your hours!

As we approach the end of the winter term, many TAs will also be approaching the maximum number of hours directly related to your TAship, including teaching, grading, attending lectures, and corresponding with students. Take some time to review your Duties Specification Agreement with your course supervisor and to revise your hours if needed in a manner you can both duties will require you to work more than exceed 140 hours this term, notify your course instructor immediately. All overtime claims must be approved by the Director of Administration for the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

If your course supervisor asks you to work more than 140 hours this term, remind them that any hours you work that exceed 140 constitutes overtime, that overtime is to be remunerated at a rate of time and a half, and that overtime hours
require prior written approval from SGPS. Of course, TAs have the right to refuse work over 140 hours per term – you cannot be expected to work any hours beyond your contract if you do not agree to do so. If you have any questions or concerns regarding overwork, overtime or your rights as a TA, please contact Dave, at president@psac610.ca.

Annual General Meeting: March 31st at 5:30pm in SEB 1059

The annual general meeting for the 2013/2014 year is going to be held on March 31st at 5:30pm in the Spencer Engineering Building, room 1059. Elections will be held one week later, April 7th at 5:30pm (also in SEB 1059).

If you are interested in running for an executive position, the nomination period is now open. See below.


 

Notice of Nomination


The nomination for all local officer positions (with the exception of departmental stewards and the CRO) is now open and will end on: 12pm on March 31, 2014. The Election will take place in Room SEB 1059 on April 7, 2014 starting at 5:30PM.

We are accepting nominations for the following officer positions:
President
Administration Chair
Finance Chair
Communications Chair
Activism Chair
Arts and Humanities Chief Steward
Biological Sciences Chief Steward
Physical Sciences Chief Steward
Social Sciences Chief Steward
Post-doctoral Chief Steward
Ombudsperson

No nominations will be accepted after 12pm on March 31, 2014
Nominations must be emailed to the following addresses:
cro@psac610.ca and CC’d to psac610@psac610.ca

Nominations must indicate:
- The name of the person being nominated (self-nomination is acceptable);
- The position for which the person is being nominated.
Please note that:
- Only members from within the respective faculty may nominate or stand for nominations for chief steward positions.

Incomplete nominations will result in disqualification. The campaigning period of one week will begin at 3pm March 31, 2014. Rules regarding campaigning will be emailed to the membership approximately one week prior to the beginning of the campaign period. Any campaigning prior to the beginning of the campaign period may result in disqualification.

A one-page candidate statement (in either .pdf or .doc format) may be submitted to the PSAC 610 office for dispersal to the membership. According to the following stipulations:

1. Be no longer than one ‘letter sized’ page. Any pages beyond this will be discarded;
2. At least 85% of written material shall be 12-point font or larger. Any font-style is acceptable;
3. Margins may be of any size;
4. Statements may contain any combination of written and pictorial content;
5. Statements that are fallacious or libelous will result in disqualification of the candidate. Statements will be dispersed by the local office one week prior to the general election meeting.

They will be appended in alphabetical order of the candidates’ names.
Deadline for candidates’ statements is 3pm on March 31, 2014. Any statements received after this date will not be dispersed to the membership.
Statements must be emailed to the following addresses:
cro@psac610.ca and CC'd to psac610@psac610.ca


 

Delegates for PSAC Ontario Convention

The following members have been selected to serve as Local 610's delegates for the PSAC Ontario Convention, June 6-8, 2014:
Dave Blocker
Mary Deminion
Diana Samu-Visser
Amanda Vyce
Eric Lohman
Chris Schultz
Abul Fahad Akon

Thank you for your service to our union!




The Annual General Meeting is Monday March 31, at 5:30pm in room SEB 1059 (Spencer Engineering Building). 

Please see the email with the attached agenda, reports, previous AGM minutes, and appendices before the AGM. 

In the event that childcare is not available, membership are always more than welcome to have their children accompany them to union functions and should not hesitate to do so. 

A reception will follow after the AGM!



From the office of the Chief Returning Officer of PSAC Local 610

Notice of Nomination

The nomination for all local officer positions (except the departmental stewards, and CRO) is now open and will end on: 12pm on March 31, 2014 

The Election will take place in Room SEB 1059 on April 7, 2014 starting at 5:30PM.

We are accepting nominations for the following officer positions: 

President
Administration Chair
Finance Chair
Communications Chair
Activism Chair
Arts and Humanities Chief Steward
Biological Sciences Chief Steward
Physical Sciences Chief Steward
Social Sciences Chief Steward
Post-doctoral Chief Steward
Ombudsperson

          No nominations will be accepted after 12pm on March 31, 2014 

Nominations must be emailed to the following addresses:

cro@psac610.ca

and cc’d to

psac610@psac610.ca 

Nominations must indicate:

- The name of the person being nominated (self-nomination is acceptable);

 -The position for which the person is being nominated. 

Please note that:

-Only members from within the respective faculty may nominate or stand for nominations for chief steward positions. 

Incomplete nominations will result in disqualification. The campaigning period of one week will begin at 3pm March 31, 2014. Rules regarding campaigning will be emailed to the membership approximately one week prior to the beginning of the campaign period. Any campaigning prior to the beginning of the campaign period may result in disqualification

A one page candidate statement (pdf or doc) may be submitted to the local office for dispersal to the membership. According to the following stipulations: 

Statements shall meet the following criteria:

1. Be no longer than one ‘letter sized’ page. Any pages beyond this will be discarded;

2. At least 85% of written material shall be 12-point font or larger. Any font-style is acceptable;

3. Margins may be of any size;

4. Statements may contain any combination of written and pictorial content;

5. Statements that are fallacious or libelous will result in disqualification of the candidate.

Statements will be dispersed by the local office one week prior to the general election meeting. They will be appended in alphabetical order of the candidates’ names. 

Deadline for candidates’ statements is 3pm on March 31, 2014. Any statements received after this date will not be dispersed to the membership. 

Statements must be emailed to the following addresses:

cro@psac610.ca

and cc’d to

psac610@psac610.ca 



A Message and Request from the Food Bank Committee:

The work of the food bank committee (FBC) is to provide relief for members of the local who are experiencing unexpected financial shortages. Specifically, the FBC aims to ameliorate a situation in which a member is unable to purchase food for themselves and/ or dependents due to these unexpected financial shortfalls. Prior to 2012, possibly due to mismanagement or poor awareness of the available aid, the food bank’s budget of $6000 was never exhausted. As such, in the year 2012-2013, the FBC put energy into advertising to increase the profile of this service. The fund was finally on the radar of our membership and began to be used at an increasing rate, showing that there is truly a great need for financial assistance among the local's members. By the end of the committee's year-long tenure, the fund had run out. 

The fund has been continually and increasingly drawn upon by our members this year, and that is with no additional advertising besides the information delivered about union services during orientation and union training events. As of now—well before the end of the union’s operating year (i.e., June 2013 – June 2014)—the fund has been completely exhausted. 

We believe this is evidence of the great need exhibited by our members, about which we will present a data-based report at this year's AGM. The FBC voted earlier this month, as an emergency measure, to move the money earmarked for our committee's operations ($1000) into the food bank fund. We felt this emergency measure was necessary to address the applications that are still coming into the union office at a steady rate. This operations money can only cover the backlog of applications that already exist. As such, we have no funds to cover the continuing needs of our members. 

At the Stewards Meeting on February 24, 2014, the FBC will propose a motion to add an additional $3000 to this year’s food bank fund so that we may continue to disburse aid to members who are in need of this small but necessary relief to their financial burden. The food bank fund is drawn from membership dues, we therefore bring this matter to you for your consideration. Please speak to your stewards about this proposal, as they will be voting on your behalf. 


** Volunteers Needed
------------------------------------------------------------
** To test an hours tracking cell-phone app
------------------------------------------------------------

As many of you know, tracking our working hours is the only way to ensure that we are not being exploited. Teaching Assistants at Western receive contracts for 140 hours of work, which are further broken down into specific categories on our Duties Specification Agreement. It is the responsibility of TAs to make sure that we do not work more hours than we are paid, and also to ensure that if we are being asked to go over, that we are compensated with overtime pay. 

To that end, we would like to explore the use of digital hours-tracking apps or software (such as Timesheet (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.rauscha.apps.timesheet) ) in order to determine the pros, cons, and general effectiveness of the software in protecting against overwork. 

The pilot program would simply require that you track your hours for the remainder of this term using Timesheet, keep notes about what you like and do not like about it, and then sit down for a focus group session with other users (and members of the executive) to discuss the software after the term ends. 

If you are interested, please contact Eric Lohman (http://communications@psac610.ca), the Communications Chair. 

Budget 2014-2015: 

The Finance committee is working towards the Budget for 2014-2015. If you would like to provide some input, or voice your concerns to the Finance Chair (http://finance@psac610.ca) regarding the budget, please do so as soon as possible. 

Academic Worker Hoodies for Sale

Some of you may have seen the black hoodies around campus, and now is you chance to get one of your own! The local is selling them to interested members at a reduced cost. These hoodies help us build solidarity amongst our members by making us visible to one another around campus. This is an important goal of our local. The hoodies are also pretty good at keeping you warm. 

They are being sold for $20 each at the local office (Sommerville House room 1313) from 10:00am to 2:00pm, Monday to Friday until February 28th, or until our supplies run out. Cash only please. 

Local Office Open during Reading Week

The local 610 office will be open during Reading Week (although closed on Monday for Family Day). Regular office hours are Monday to Friday, 10:00am- 2:00pm.  


PSAC Local 610 Scholarship Applications are Due March 31st

PSAC Local 610 awards multiple scholarships once a year to members who demonstrate excellence in the areas of community involvement, academic achievement, and outstanding contributions to research. 

For more information on these scholarships, or to download the application forms, please visit the PSAC Local 610 website (http://www.psac610.ca/benefits/scholarship) . Or email the Administration Chair (http://administration@psac610.ca) . Applications are due by the end of March.



** Call Out For Delegates to PSAC Ontario 6th Triennial Conference
------------------------------------------------------------

** Would you like to attend the Public Service Alliance of Candada's Ontario convention as a delegate from Local 610? Held in Mississauga, Ontario from June 6th-8th, the convention will elect the Regional Executive Vice-President, Representatives of Ontario Council, deal with resolutions and matters submitted, and establish the next three-year budget for PSAC Ontario. Local 610 is entitled to send nine delegates to the Ontario convention. All PSAC members in good standing are eligible to attend as delegates. Registration, transportation, and accommodation costs will be covered. Please indicate your interest by emailing David Blocker (http://president@psac610.ca) , President of Local 610 by February 5th, 2014. 

------------------------------------------------------------

The Time Has Come for Steward Solidarity Events!

The winter term is here, so it's time to start holding your departmental solidarity events. Our local union has identified the importance of encouraging our stewards to interact with members of their departments, and we have resources set aside in our budget to help support these events. Through communication and dialogue we will gain a better understanding of working conditions, concerns, challenges and other issues our membership faces in their respective departments. 

In addition to listening to the concerns of our members, this event also creates an informal venue for stewards to highlight the services and benefits that are available to our members, such as the Extended Health Plan, bursaries and scholarships, and available assistance with any work related problems such as harassment and overtime pay. Finally, the events encourage our members to spend time building solidarity with one another as workers. 

Please contact your departmental steward if you wish to help plan your event.



 

Dear Steward, 

Stewards are the driving force of the TA union and play a vital role in protecting and promoting our members’ workplace rights and the terms of our Collective Agreement. To help prepare you to effectively serve as a steward in your department this year, the Local is offering STEWARD TRAINING SESSIONS.

Two training sessions will be offered per division, however, you only need to attend ONE of them. Some of the topics that will be discussed in the training sessions include:
 

The roles and responsibilities of Stewards 

• Tips on how to serve as an effective Steward 

• Common situations you may encounter as a Steward and how to deal with them 

The Local strongly encourages you to attend one of the sessions that are scheduled for your division because specific training will be provided that is tailored to meet your unique needs. However, if you are unable to attend either of these sessions, you may attend an alternate session that is scheduled for the other divisions. Just be sure to notify your division’s Chief Steward that this is what you intend to do. 

Here are the dates, times, and locations of the training sessions as well as the names and email addresses of the Chief Stewards for each division: 

Arts & Humanities and Social Sciences Steward Training 

Chief Steward Arts & Humanities: Diana Samu-Visser 

Chief Steward Social Sciences: Amanda Vyce

 

Wednesday, November 6th (1:00-2:30 p.m.)

Thames Hall (TH), room 4185

 

OR

 

Monday, November 11th (6:00-7:30 p.m.)

Thames Hall (TH), room 3154

 

Biological and Physical Sciences Steward Training 

Chief Steward Bio Sciences: Julia Matheson 

Chief Steward Physical Sciences: Ashrafur Rahman

 

Thursday, November 7th (6:00-8:00 p.m.)

Physics & Astronomy Building (P&AB), room 36

 

OR

 

Tuesday, November 12th (12:00-2:00 p.m.)

Thames Hall (TH), room 4185

 

Light refreshments will be offered at each session. We look forward to meeting you and warmly welcome you to the PSAC 610 team!

Best, 

The PSAC Local 610 Executive Committee




                    Stewards Needed!

                            Please consider being a departmental steward

There is an urgent need for members to join PSAC local 610 as departmental stewards.

What You'll Get:
A free "Academic Worker" hoodie
A (very) small stipend
Satisfaction from knowing you're strengthening your local

What You'll Do:
Help your fellow TAs deal with workplace issues
Attend Steward's meetings and General meetings 
Communicate union business and issues to your colleagues
Plan Solidarity Events

For more information, email Eric the Communications Chair.
Or Download the nomination form.

 

 

Dear members,

PSAC LOCAL 610

Western University 

 

You are being invited to participate in a study that we, a group of researchers from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Western University, are conducting. The purpose of this study is to investigate the attitudes that students, faculty and staff at Western University, may have regarding the reuse of treated wastewater for various applications. No personal information will be collected for research purposes and responses are completely confidential. Participation in this study is voluntary. You may refuse to answer any questions and may withdraw at any time. It is anticipated that the entire task will take approximately 15 minutes. 

 

If you would like to participate in this study please click on the link below to access the letter of information and survey. Your participation is greatly appreciate it. 

 

http://edu.surveygizmo.com/s3/1076664/Attitudes-towards-water-reclamation-in-the-City-of-London




                                                   Join a Committee! (Get an "Academic Worker" hoodie!)

If you're interested in joining one of the union's committees, please visit the PSAC 610 website to view the terms of reference and find out how to get involved. This will give you an overview of what the committees do and how you can contribute to the vibrancy of the local. A few of the recently updated committees are below. 

Foodbank Committee

Financial Assistance Committee

Political Action and Social Justice Committee

 

 

Help Keep The Union Strong - Get Invovled & Become A Departmental Steward!
 
Stewards fulfill a vital role in the day-to-day functioning of the Local. They act as the first point of contact for members experiencing a work-related issue and provide a direct communication link between members and the Local's Executive Committee. Stewards also play a significant role in helping to protect the rights and benefits that the union has successfully bargained for in our Collective Agreement. The roles and responsibilities of stewards include: representing the interests of members in your department; attending stewards meetings, and assisting members throughout the resolution of workplace problem.
 
You are not required to have previous experience working in a union, or as a steward. The Local will provide training to help all stewards to fill their role effectively and with confidence. 

 

Each department is entitled to one steward for every 25 graduate students. If you are unsure how many steward positions your department is entitled to, contact the Local's Office Manager at psac610@psac610.ca for more information.  

 

To become a steward, you must complete the steward nomination form available on the Local's website at: http://www.psac610.ca/stewards. We look forward to having you on the PSAC 610 team!  In recognition of your service to the Local, all stewards will receive an "Academic Worker" hoodie! 

 

 

Financial Support Package Letters

Students in several departments have received Financial Support Package (FSP) letters over the last two months. These letters represent an effort to increase transparency and better inform students of how their funding is distributed over the course of the year, the sources of each semester's funding, and to ensure that students understand the dynamic of the lump sum payment. At the bottom of each letter, the student is asked to sign to confirm that they have read the letter, which is then returned to the department.

These letters are a great step forward in clearer communications with students about their funding. However, the letter does not represent a component of the Collective Agreement or the Duties Specification Letter. If you are one of the students affected by the lump sum issue from 2012-2013, and the FSP package replicates the lump sum issue, you may choose to sign the letter or not. Your TA appointment and other funding will not be affected by whether or not you sign the letter.
 

Duties Specification Letter: "Weekly Hours" and the Average Work Week

The new Duties Specification Letter (DSL) is divided up into weekly and non-weekly hours. However, many professors and students have brought to our attention that this new breakdown is not necessarily reflective of the workload that students will be asked to undertake, especially given that each course requires something different in terms of the distribution of hours. To this effect, the line that reads "Weekly Hours" can only, at best, reflect an average workweek for TAs, and as this average is ten hours per week according to the Collective Agreement (Article 17.01), the value for "Weekly Hours" should be consistent with this. If another value has been determined and submitted that is greater than ten hours per week, this can be rectified at the required mid-appointment meeting between the course supervisor and TA, at which point the DSL will be reviewed and alterations can be mutually agreed upon.

 

Arts & Humanities Chief Steward Office Hours

The Arts & Humanities Chief Steward will begin holding weekly office hours on Wednesdays from 12:00pm-2:00pm in the PSAC Office (Somerville House 1313). Arts and Humanities students are encouraged to drop in with any concerns or questions they may have about the Local, their contract and terms of employment, or becoming involved with PSAC committees and initiatives.

 

 

Financial Assistance Application Deadline for October is Approaching

The Financial Assistance Application (formerly TANB) is now open and posted on our website. The deadline for the next round of applications is October 15th. For more information and for the form, click here. Questions can be directed to the committee chair.

 

 

Copyright © 2013 PSAC Local 610 at the University of Western Ontario, All rights reserved.
You are on this list because you are a member of PSAC Local 601, Teaching Assistant's Union at UWO

Our mailing address is:

PSAC Local 610 at the University of Western Ontario

Western University

1313 Somerville House

London, On N6A 3K7

Canada


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Financial Assistance Application Deadline for September is Approaching

The Financial Assistance Application (formerly TANB) is now open and posted on our website. The deadline for the next round of applications is September 15. For more information and for the form, click here. Questions can be directed to the committee chair at fac@psac610.ca.


                                                PSAC Local Local 610 Office Hours are Back to Normal

Summer is over, for better or worse


The union office will be open Monday to Friday, 10am-2pm.

 

 

 

Extended Health Plan is Reset as of September 1st

As of September 1st, the EHP enters a new year and the balance of all members has been reset. Everyone who has or will have a TA position in the new academic year has a balance of $499 with the EHP and can immediately begin applying to the EHP for expenses dated September 1st or later. However, as the employer will initially only give us information on first term employment and then not before October 1st, please include your TA Contract or your Duties Specification Letter with your claim.

 

If you were a TA last year, the EHP will still honour claims for the 2012-2013 academic year, but we hope to close off financial administration for last year by October 15th. If you think you will be submitting a claim for last year AFTER October 15 2013, please contact the EHP Administrator atehp@psac610.ca.

 

PSAC Local 610 Committees are Looking for Members

The Communication Committee and the Finance Committee are seeking members. 

If you're interested in the Finance Committee, forward your name to the
Finance Chair.

If you're interested in the Communications Committee, forward your name to the
Communications Chair.

 

 

 

 

New Collective Agreements
Available in the Union Office


It's important that mem

 


 

Financial Assistance Applications

Due August 15th


The Financial Assistance Application (formerly TANB) is now open and posted on our website. The deadline for the next round of applications is August 15. For more information and for the form, click here. Questions can be directed to the committee chair at 
fac@psac610.ca.

 

 

We would like to remind our membership of two very important LGBTQ events happening in London this month.

Members of the PSAC Local 610 staff and executive will be marching in the London Pride Parade, taking place Sunday July 28th, 2013. The parade starts at 12:30pm and leaves from the Western Fair Grounds (Dundas and Ontario Street). Members interested in marching under the union banner can look for the PSAC flag at the Western Fair Grounds. For more information, visit the Pride London website.

PSAC Local 610 is also proud to help sponsor GenPop's Pride show at The APK on July 26th, beginning at 9:00pm. Guests can pay what they can afford at the door, and it's an all ages show. For more details, visit the event website.


 

New Collective Agreements
Available in the Union Office


It's important that members read and understand the collective agreement. If you would like a copy, please stop by the PSAC local office (1515 Somerville House) for a free copy of the new agreement. Or, download it from our website.



PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for June 7 2013

In this issue: 

  • EHP Benefits
  • LeadTA Pilot Program
  • LumpSum Grievance Resolution
  • Pride London
  • Trans Policy Consultation Meeting - June 11, Union Office from 12pm to 2pm
  • Foodbank – New Policy
  • Financial Assistance DEADLINE June 15
  • Postdocs 

EHP Benefits 

All Union members are eligible for up to $499 of benefits from our Extended Health Plan. This benefit amount was changed recently to provide parity for all TAs, irrespective of contracted hours. If you have maxed out your benefits at a lower cap earlier this year, you can still apply again to receive additional coverage up to a total for $499 for the academic year of 2012-2013 – even if this application is to top up an earlier claim. For more information, please click here. 

LeadTA Pilot Program 

We are currently working with SGPS towards implementing a pilot program of Lead TAs who will serve as mentors, coaches, and liaisons for their home departments. This pilot program of 8 new hires was a result of gains made during our last round of bargaining with UWO. And hiring searches are now underway across many departments in several faculties. To learn more about eligibility requirements for this pilot program, please contact your home department. 

LumpSum Grievance Resolution 

As part of the settlement for the group grievance relating to the application of one-time payments within our student funding calculations, we are pleased to announce that our Union and SGPS has completed the handling of the cases of those members who began enrolment at UWO in September of 2011. To date, 27 members have had their funding calculation revised to better reflect the terms of the CA. 

Over the course of the summer, we will continue to handle the cases of those members who began their enrolment in September of 2012. However, final resolution of many individual cases will need to wait until the completion of the academic year. This is a necessary step so that claims may be adjudicated in relationship to (a) the monies promised in a letter of offer; (b) the way funding should be operationalized in accordance to the CA; and (c) the actual monies a claimant received over the year. This delay is to ensure each in individual claim is settled with accuracy. Questions about the grievance process may be directed to the our Union office or president@psac610.ca. 

Pride London 

On Friday, July 26th, PSAC Local 610 is proudly sponsoring Gen Pop's all ages pride event. Happening at the APK (347 Clarence Street), Gen Pop is a monthly trans and queer fun(d)raising event for Open Closet – a social support group for LGBTQ youth in London. This pride event will feature DJs, drag/burlesque performers, and other musical acts – including the queer/feminist Montréal-based punk band, Bitter Fruit! The event is slated to start at 9pm and donations will be collected at the door in support of Open Closet. 

On Sunday July 28th, PSAC Local 610 will be marching in the parade in solidarity with Gen Pop and faculty/graduate student members of Western's Queer Caucus. The Parade starts at 12:30 and leaves from the Western Fair parking lot (@ Dundas/Ontario St.). Please join us! 

For more information on either of these events, please e-mail gen.pop.london@gmail.com 

Trans Policy Consultation Meeting - June 11, Union Office from 12pm to 2pm 

The final Trans Policy Consultation Meeting will take place from 12-2 pm on Tues June 11 in Somerville House 1313 (PSAC office boardroom). 

We will be presenting and discussing our recommendations for the local.

Light refreshments will be served. 

We hope to see many of you there! Please feel free to let others know who may be interested. 

Foodbank – New Policy 

The Foodbank is available to assist members experiencing student poverty. The Foodbank Committee has recently updated the policy for the foodbank as well as creating a handbook to assist you in applying. Please click here for the new policy and here for the handbook. 

Financial Assistance DEADLINE June 15 

The Financial Assistance Application (formerly TANB) is now open and posted on our website. The deadline for the next monthly round of applications is June 15. For more information and for the form click here. Questions can be directed to the committee chair at fac@psac610.ca. 

Postdocs 

We are pleased to welcome back Peter Ferguson as the Post Doc Representative. Peter played an integral role in unionizing the postdocs and will be an excellent resource for PSAC Local 611. Peter’s contact information is postdocREP@psac610.ca.

 

 


 

PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for the week of April 2

In this issue:

 

  • Elections – Nominations period will end on April 5 at 3pm
  • Extended Health Plan – 499$ Maximum for all members
  • Financial Assistance Application – Due April 15
  • Bargaining Committee Call Out
  • Foodbank Committee Call Out
  • Purplebikes – DIY Bike Repair

 

Elections – Nominations period will end on April 5 at 3pm

 

The nomination for all local officer positions (except the departmental stewards, and CRO) is now open and will end on: 3pm on April 5th, 2013. Please email nominations to CRO (cro@psac610.ca) AND psac610@psac610.ca.

 

The Election will take place in Room 2050 SSC on April 12th, 2013 starting at 3PM 

We are accepting nominations for the following officer positions: 

  • President
  • Administration Chair
  • Finance Chair
  • Communications Chair
  • Activism Chair
  • Arts and Humanities Chief Steward
  • Biological Sciences Chief Steward
  • Physical Sciences Chief Steward
  • Social Sciences Chief Steward
  • Post-doctoral Chief Steward
  • Ombudsperson
  • Occupational Health and Safety

No nominations will be accepted after 3pm on April 5th, 2013.

For more information, please click here, or contact the CRO (cro@psac610.ca).

 

Extended Health Plan – 499$ Maximum for all members

 

This maximum allotment for the Extended Health Plan was recently increased from a variable allotment based on the number of TA hours. We are pleased to announce that the maximum allotment for all members is 499$, whether you are a full TA or a half TA. If you applied earlier this academic year and reached a lower cap, you can apply again to receive additional coverage for your earlier claim. It is not likely that we will revisit claims in this manner after the end of this academic year. For more information, please click here.

 

Financial Assistance Application – Due April 15

 

The Financial Assistance Application (formerly TANB) is now open and posted on our website. The deadline is April 15, 2013. For more information and for the form click here.

 

Bargaining Committee Call Out

 

We are looking for members to join the Bargaining Committee to assist with the negotiation of the Collective Agreement for Post-Doctoral members, Local 611. If you are interested, please contact president@psac610.ca. Please click here for the terms or reference for further information.

 

Foodbank Committee Call Out

 

The food bank committee is looking for interested members to get involved in the administration of food bank resources, for the remainder of the academic year and during the 2013-2014 year.

 

The committee uses innovative strategies to distribute food bank resources to its members. We constantly seek new ways and best practices to advertise and disburse food bank resources.

 

Please contact the community alliance chair, Jonathan Giles, at communityalliance@psac610.ca if you are interested in this opportunity to get involved. Click here for the terms of reference.

 

Purplebikes – DIY Bike Repair

Spring is here! (Sort of) And as many of us bike to work, did you know that we can use the resources at purplebikes to maintain our rides. More information about what purple bikes is available here: 

http://www.usc.uwo.ca/purplebikes/index.html 

Last year, we donated a workbench to purplebikes in recognition of the great service they provide to the UWO community. So if you need help with changing a flat or learning more about other DIY bike projects, go and check out all the great things they do, or better yet, get involved. Thank you purple bikes, for the great service you provide to the student community!


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for the week of March 29
In this issue:  

 

  • Women and the Academy: Listen, Speak, Learn – Saturday, March 23, SH 2355
  • Open Access Contest and Speaker’s Panel
  • Forced program withdrawals at Queens University
  • Support for Porter Strike (COPE Local 343)
  • Free Screening of Ghosts with Shit Jobs – Wednesday, March 20, 8pm, JLVAC 100
  • Financial Assistance Application – NOW OPEN – Deadline April 15
  • Special invitation from Columbia Sportswear for PSAC 610 members – until March 31

Women and the Academy: Listen, Speak, Learn – Saturday, March 23  

Saturday, March 23rd 

Somerville House, Room 2355 

9:00am-3:30pm 

The aim of this workshop is to promote a creative, collaborative environment to discuss women’s issues in the academy as well as building solidarity among women inside and outside of the academy. 

The workshop will also include discussions on the following topics:

·         Accommodation of women’s issues in the workplace

·         Women, pedagogy, and activism

·         Political thought and sexism

·         Intersections of racism and sexism

·         Hiring and discrimination

·         Cultural sensitivity and pedagogy

·         Grading and teaching practices

·         Financial and funding issues

The goals of this conference are to:

1.    Provide an inclusive, safe, workshop-style space in which dialogues, pedagogy, and creative and critical engagement with issues pertaining to women and the academy might take place.

2.    Encourage undergraduate, graduate, faculty, employee, and community involvement in conversation and activism concerning the rights, well-being, and success of women.

3.    Draw attention to women’s issues while offering an arena in which solutions, solidarity, and the opportunity to learn from the insights and experiences of others might be developed.

Presentations throughout the day might take a variety of forms, including teach-ins, panel discussions, poster presentations, performances and exhibitions, lectures, and demonstrations. 

Open Access Contest and Speaker’s Panel 

In January 2012 Western University and the University of Toronto signed a secret license agreement with Access Copyright which increased the fee for students by 80%. Downloading most of the $27.50 fee to the individual student, Western University has entered a license agreement that does not represent its student’s or faculty’s interests. While renowned universities such as Harvard are moving towards Open Access, Western is signing pre-emptive agreements whose licenses cover the use of materials already included in fair dealing.     

The Society of Graduate Students (SOGS), Western University’s graduate student union, is organising a meme and video contest about Western's Access Copyright license agreement. They are asking both graduate and undergraduate students to create either a meme or a mash-up video explaining why the Access Copyright license is a bad deal for post-secondary students in general and, specifically, for Western University students. To enter, students must create a meme or 30 second mash-up video and tweet to @WesternSogs or post it to Youtube including the following hashtag: #Accesscopyrightwestern The deadline for submissions is March 20th. The short-list and winner will be announced at our Speaker's Panel event on March 22nd from 5-7pm at North Campus Building room 117. The grand winner will win an Ipad! 

Our three judges and speakers, Sam Trosow (Western University), Ariel Katz (University of Toronto), and Howard Knopf (Ottawa lawyer), are renowned copyright experts who have been critical of the Access Copyright license signed by Western University and the University of Toronto in January 2012. They will be judging the short-list of memes and mash-up videos and choosing a winner. They will also be speaking about why they think the Access Copyright license is a bad deal for post-secondary students, as well as other options to deal with copyright issues on campuses if Western University were to choose not to resign the license agreement in June 2013.  

The Society of Graduate Students, local 47 of the Canadian Federation of Students, represents approximately 4900 full and part-time graduate students at Western University. 

Contact:

Désirée Lamoureux,

d.lamoureux.sogs@gmail.com

(226) 678-8703 

Forced program withdrawals at Queens University 

The Graduate Studies Executive Council (GSEC) at Queen's University has recently passed a motion forcing mandatory withdrawals after the 2nd year of an MSc program and the 4th year of a PhD program. This move contradicts Statistics Canada figures which indicate that the average PhD completion time is five years, nine months (here). You can read the motion here. Another motion regarding time extensions was tabled due to the time constraints of the meeting itself. You can read this motion here. You can also read more information about this issue, media coverage and students protest in the following website (here). PSAC Local 610 jointly with SOGS sent a support letter to our fellow graduate students at Queens University. You can read the letter on our Facebook page here. If you would like to know further information about this matter or obtain a hard copy of the letter of support, please visit our office.

Support for Porter Strike (COPE Local 343)

Members at Porter Airlines at the Toronto Island Airport have been on strike since January 10, 2013. Porter refuses to bargain a fair and equitable agreement. We are pleased to announce that our Stewards have voted to support the Porter strike through the “adopt a worker program” in the amount of $10,000. We would like to thank Greg Claxon, a member of COPE Local 343, who came to talk to our Stewards about the strike. 

Free Screening of Ghosts with Shit Jobs 

Please join the Department of Visual Arts for a free screening of the film Ghosts with Shit Jobs, followed by a Q&A with writer and producer Jim Monroe. Open to the public.

WED. MARCH 20, 8 PM, Room 100, JLVAC. 

See the trailer here: http://ghostswithshitjobs.com/#&panel1-2 

"In 2040, the economic collapse of the west is complete and the east is in full ascendance. North Americans now do the undesirable jobs to cater to wealthy Asian and Indian markets. A Chinese documentary show called Window On the World focuses a compassionate eye on these unlucky enough to have been born in the slums of Toronto in a special report entitled 'Ghosts With Shit Jobs'. Oscar is a digital janitor, and has to manually cover up logos for copyright reasons in the future's answer to Google StreetView. Gary and Karen assemble robot baby dolls for the children of the wealthy in Asia. Anton and Toph are spider silk collectors. Serina is human spam and makes a living by mentioning brands in casual conversation." 

"Ingenious.... A gripping movie that uses cleverness, not CGI, to paint a vivid and satirical future." Cory Doctorow "Brilliant... will leave you emotionally shaken, your brain teeming with weird new ideas..." - io9 "...outstanding..." - Boing Boing "...sheer delight..." -The Guardian "immensely successful... undoubtedly a cause for celebration" -Creative Applications 

Financial Assistance Application – NOW OPEN – Deadline April 15 

The Financial Assistance Application (formerly TANB) is now open and posted on our website. The deadline is April 15, 2013. For more information click here. Please note, the application sent out on March 15 had a few errors, please see the updated attached application form. 

Special invitation from Columbia Sportswear for PSAC 610 members!

Columbia Sportswear has extended a Special Invitation to all Western University Grad/Post Doc Students Local 610 Members to shop at their newly relocated Employee Store.  They have recently moved to London from Strathroy and would like to welcome us to their new location!  The address is 1425 Max Brose Road, just off the 401 at Highbury.

The store is open by INVITATION ONLY and offers wholesale pricing (up to a 50% discount) on all merchandise including Columbia, Mountain Hard Wear, Sorel and Montrail.  Our invitation is valid from March 1st- March 31st,  2013 and you are able to bring up to 4 guests with you when you shop.  The invitation is not to be shared with anyone outside of our group. 

When you go to the store you must bring:

1)    The invitation (see attachment)

2)    Your Local 610 Membership card OR Valid Western University ID

3)    Photo ID

 


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for March 6

In this issue: 

  • TANB - Third-Round of Applications
  • Stewards Meeting March 11th at 4pm in room UCC 53
  • Annual General Meeting – Please fill in doodle poll before Saturday, March 9th
  • Political Action Committee – Track Your Hours
  • Purple Bikes – DIY Bike Repair

 

TANB – Third-Round of Applications 

The TA Needs Bursary (TANB) has completed its two scheduled rounds of funding, based on the criteria used in past years. However, the TANB Committee feels it can do more to help PSAC 610 members. 

We are pleased to announce that a third round of applications for financial assistance this year will open on March 15th, with a deadline of April 15. This is in advance of the full roll-out of a new, improved financial assistance program. 

Currently, our plans involve renaming the TANB as part of the Financial Assistance Fund. This fund will be adjudicated by the Financial Assistance Committee, which carries over the members from the past TANB Committee. The Financial Assistance Committee will consider applications year-round from June to April. Successful applicants will be funded from month to month, rather than only twice a year. Our hope is to respond to member emergencies much more quickly and efficiently than in the past. 

With this new structure in mind, more information and a new Financial Assistance application form and policies will be posted on the PSAC 610 Website on March 15th. 

All members are encouraged to apply for and claim unexpected expenses that have arisen over the course of the academic year. Applications will be adjudicated by the end of April. 

I would like to conclude by thanking the committee members for their tireless and excellent work. None of this would be possible without their dedication and support. I would also like to congratulate Mary Deminion, who has been elected as interim Chair of this Committee. 

Sincerely, 

Kevin Godbout

PSAC 610 Secretary 

Stewards Meeting March 11th at 4pm in room UCC 53 

The Stewards Meeting will be next Monday, March 11th, at 4pm in room UCC 53 (University Community Centre). 

Annual General Meeting – Please Fill in Doodle Poll before Saturday March 9th 

Please fill in by March 9 the doodle poll when you will be available for the Annual General Meeting. Here is the link: http://doodle.com/vchqtsqabvprb83c

Political Action Committee – Track Your Hours 

What is a political action? It could be as big as to organize a demonstration, or as basic, but equally important, as to count your working hours. As Teaching Assistants, there is a specific amount of hours that we agree to work when signing a contract. If the hours go over, management's duty is to pay for any extra hours. Our duty is to make sure that we have not gone over the 140 hours. To do this, I suggest to use the Log Sheet, which you can download from the Union's website: http://www.psac610.ca/Documents/hours-log-sheet
Counting hours is a political action!

Jaime R. Brenes Reyes
Political Action Committee
 

Purplebikes – DIY Bike Repair

Spring is just around the corner. And as many of us bike to work, did you know that we can use the resources at purplebikes to maintain our rides. More information about what purple bikes is available here: 

http://www.usc.uwo.ca/purplebikes/index.html 

Last year, we donated a workbench to purplebikes in recognition of the great service they provide to the UWO community. So if you need help with changing a flat or learning more about other DIY bike projects, go and check out all the great things they do, or better yet, get involved. Thank you purple bikes, for the great service you provide to the student community! 


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for February 26, 2013

In this issue: 

  • Lumpsum Resolution – Please bring in your Letter of Offer by March 1
  • Bylaw Consultation Dates: February 25 at 2:30pm, February 28 at 11:30am and March 1st at 4pm
  • Foodbank
  • TANB and Scholarship
  • Special invitation from Columbia Sportswear for PSAC 610 members! 

 

Lumpsum Resolution – Please bring in your letter of offer by March 1 

We are pleased to announce that UWO has heard our complaint regarding the poor implementation of "one-time payments" (lumpsum) within many letters of offer that were issued to graduate students who began their programs after September, 2011. (If you began before September 2011 and are unsure if you are affected or want your letter included, please bring in your letters of offer.)

It was in October, when we began our investigation, after which we brought our grievance to SGPS. We have since reached an agreement to resolve the problem.

As we know the lumpsum thing has been an issue across all the faculties at the University this year. It has also been difficult to both explain and understand as there are many variations within our student funding calculations. Therefore, the agreement is to conduct a review of funding for individuals who are concerned they are affected.

Graduate students who would like to be included within the review process must bring their letters of offer to the Union office (SH 1313) before 2 pm on March 1st.

As we have concluded that it is only 1st and 2nd year grad students who may be affected only students who have enrolled after September 2011, will be eligible for consideration.

If you do not have your letter of offer, you should ask your grad assistant for a copy.

If you have further questions come by the union office M-F 10-2, email your chief steward, or visit the president during his office hours on Fridays 12-2.

Again, we must to be clear that the deadline for consideration in the review is Friday, March 1st, 2 pm at the union office. People coming forward after that date will be ineligible for consideration. So please spread the word amongst your colleagues that they should read this email as it contains very important information. 

Bylaw Consultation Dates: February 25 at 2:30pm, February 28 at 11:30am and March 1st at 4pm

The Bylaw Committee (BC) and the Bargaining Mobilization Committee (BMA) are hosting a variety of consultation and information sessions next week. Please join us to provide your input on the draft bylaws and help shape your Union Local. 

The BC will hold a consultation on Monday, February 25 in UCC 53 from 2.30pm to 4.30pm. The purpose of this session is to help define the financial considerations of potential changes to the bylaws and discuss options concerning officer renumeration for future Executives and Chief Stewards. 

The BMA is facilitating two consultations, which are drop-in sessions to help gather feedback from the Local on its bylaws. The first drop-in consultation will happen in the Grad Club seminar room on Thursday, February 28 from 11:30am to 1:30pm and the second will occur in Middlesex College room 17 (near the Grad Club) Friday, March 1st from 4pm to 6pm. Refreshments will be provided. 

Again, please join us during these consultation sessions, your feedback is important to us! The dates again: 

Monday, February 25, 2:30-4:30pm, UCC 53

Thursday, February 28, 11:30am-1:30pm, Grad Club seminar room

Friday, March 1st, 4:00-6:00pm, MC 17 

Foodbank 

Your foodbank is accepting applications for grocery store vouchers from members in need. Please drop in to the office to pick up a form (Somerville hall 1313) or fill out a form here and bring it in. You may be eligible for up to $100 in gift cards.

 



PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for January 15, 2013

Happy New Year! 

In this issue: 

  • Upcoming Events 
    • Bill 115 January 26 Rally in Toronto 
    • PSAC National Health and Safety Conference – Deadline January 31 
  • Conferences Working Group – Call for members 
  • PSAC Ontario Council: DCL Academic Worker Representative 
  • Help Western Draft Its New Game Plan 
  • Foodbank 
  • TA Needs Bursary (TANB) 
  • Call out for members recommendations for the 2013-2014 budget 
  • Collective Agreement 
  • Stewards Solidarity Events 

Bill 115 January 26 Rally in Toronto

Rally against Bill 115! Defend your rights! 

On Saturday, January 26, the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) is organizing a rally against the Bill 115 - which has stripped educational workers of their right to collective bargain - in Toronto. PSAC 610 will be sending invites to join thousands of workers while the Liberal Party hosts its Ontario Convention. Let's show the provincial government that Union rights are here to stay! Let's demonstrate our solidarity towards our Sisters and Brothers!
The bus will leave Saturday at 9:30am and return to London at ~5:30pm (location TBD). RSVP with names and cellphone numbers at psac610@psac610.ca before January 23rd, 2 pm.
For more information please click here: http://ofl.ca/index.php/campaigns/democraticrights/

Jaime R. Brenes Reyes
Political Action Committee

PSAC National Health and Safety Conference

The 2013 PSAC National Health and Safety Conference will be held April 12 to 14, 2013 at the Sheraton Hotel in Montréal, Québec under the theme “MENTAL HEALTH AT WORK – WE ARE ALL AFFECTED.”

Please find attached the call-out in both French and English as well as the link to complete the registration form on-line: HTTP://PSAC.COM/CONFERENCES/2013/HEALTHSAFETY/HOME-E.SHTML#FORM

The deadline for applications and resolutions is JANUARY 31. 2013. 

Conferences Working Group – Call for Members

PSAC Local 610 needs to do an assessment of our involvement at conferences related to the issues of labour. This is a call out for members interested in participating in a working group to help better our understanding of the costs and frequency of the conferences to which we want to be sending delegate. An initial lunch-time meeting will be held at the grad club before the end of the month. If you want to be involved RSVP here: psac610@psac610.ca 

PSAC Ontario Council: DCL Academic Worker Representative

Local 610 would like to wish a hearty congratulation to Marie Polgar-Matthews, our sister from Local 555 (UOIT, Oshawa) who has been seated as our democratic voice on the Ontario council. This role is our direct representative within the Ontario PSAC organizational structure. We are sure you'll do a fantastic job!

Help Western Draft Its New Game Plan

Western University's Strategic Plan is an in-depth articulation of the University's mandate that focuses on several aspects of the University's operation and identifies key areas for development – including research priorities, enrollment, and funding models. This document is currently being revised and will be finalized by the beginning of the next Fall term.

Going into this process, the Senate Committee on University Planning has been tasked with facilitating as meaningful a consultative process as can be achieved. It is currently collecting feedback through a variety of means (there is more information about that on the current Strategic Planning website.)This process is continuing until the deadline of February 29. No new feedback to the University Administration about Western's next Strategic Plan can be accepted after this date.

Departmental submissions must be received by February 19th. As the Graduate Student Representative to SCUP, I am trying to make contact with as many graduate student departmental associations as possible in order to get as comprehensive of a picture of our experiences and suggestions back to the Committee as possible. Please contact Mary Eileen Wennekers, the university senator representing graduate students on SCUP, at wennekerseileen@gmail.com if you have any questions about the process, suggestions for the best ways to get feedback, or (this would be the best!) if you want to help.

Also, watch for an announcement about an information session about the process that will take place the evening of January 28h, 2012.

Call out for members recommendations for the 2013-2014 budget

The Finance Committee is preparing the budget for 2013-2014 and is seeking new ideas and project proposals from the membership. Please email your recommendations to treasurer@psac610.ca.

Foodbank

The TA/PD foodbank offers assistance to all members who self-identify as in need. Come by the office to pick up a form or fill it out here. Members are eligible for $50, $75, or $100, depending on whether or not you have dependents or a partner. 

Don't hesitate! Your union is here for you. We are here for you if you need support while we strive for a better future for our members.

In solidarity
Jonathan Giles
Community Alliance Chair

TA Needs Bursary (TANB)
Please be reminded members that the deadline for the Winter TANB is January 31st. Applications are printable from the PSAC Local 610 website and in the Union Office.

The Scholarships and TANB Committee is always looking for new members! If you are interested, please contact the Secretary, Kevin Godbout, at secretary@psac610.ca.

Collective Agreement Update

We are waiting on the Board of Governors to ratify the Collective Agreement.

Steward Solidarity Events

The new year is a great opportunity to have a Steward Solidarity Event! It’s simple! Just ask your steward to host a Steward Solidarity Event for your department. If you are a steward it’s also simple: all you have to do is pick a date that works for your group and book at the Grad Club by contacting Marc LaLonde (mlalond2@uwo.ca).

Don’t have a steward for your department? Volunteer or contact your Chief Steward! Not sure if your department has a steward – check here!

Chief Steward Arts and Humanities: Amy Wuest (artschief@psac610.ca)
Chief Steward Bio Sciences: Chris Austin (bioscichief@psac610.ca)
Chief Steward Physical Sciences: Ahmed Elatar (physicalscichief@psac610.ca)
Chief Steward Social Sciences: Brian Venne (socialscichief@psac610.ca)


Steward Solidarity Events are a great opportunity to connect with your local! Click here for more information.



PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for November 6, 2012


In this issue:
  • Issues
    • Report on Student Poverty Research Project
  • Upcoming Events
    • PSAC DCL Academic Conference – Register by November 1st, 2012
    • Nomination for PSAC Ontario Council Representative for DCL Academic Workers
    • Registration is now open OFL Women’s Leadership Summit
  • Other Issues
    • Join us on Facebook and Twitter !
Report on Student Poverty Research Project

Last month PSAC local 610 conducted a research project on student poverty issues. Two working groups were sharing their stories and discussing how their earning power at Western has affected the quality of their research and their standard of living. A broad demoraphic, composed of domestic and international students, parents, members of all divisions, racialized members, and members of both genders participated. 

A detailed report about the findings of this project was submitted to the executive committee on Monday Nov 5th.

A communication from the local to inform the membership about the findings of this report will be released on Friday Nov 9th. Also a hard copy of the full report is available at the union office in case you want to read it.

This report was prepared by Eileen Wennekers

Upcoming Events

PSAC DCL Academic Conference – November 22 to November 25

Registration is still available for the DCL Academic Conference. The Conference will be here in London, ON. Please note that our local can send 5 delegates to the conference. Expenses will be covered!

This is the first year PSAC will be hosting a DCL Academic Conference about academic issues. Queens University (PSAC 901), University of Ontario Institute of Technology (PSAC 555), and our local (610/611), will be meeting together to discuss relevant issues with fellow academic leaders. This is a great opportunity for interested future union officers to learn more about the functioning of Unions in academic institutions.

If interested please email us at psac610@psac610.ca. If you have any questions, please contact us.

Nomination for PSAC Ontario Council Representative for DCL Academic Workers

A vacancy has occurred for the position of the Alternate to the DCL (Directly Charted Locals) Academic Worker Ontario Representative on the PSAC Ontario Regional Council. All PSAC members from the DCL Academic sector, Ontario Region are eligible to run for this vacant position.

Nominations must be received no later than November 30, 2012. Nominations for the position should be submitted to:

The office of the REVP, Ontario c/o PSAC Regional Office,
90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 608,
Toronto, ON, M4P 2Y3; by fax to 416-485- 8607

Or by e-mail to reidc@psac.com.

Please submit a one page (maximum) bio to be included in the balloting package.

If you have any questions regarding this process please contact Cleo Reid at 416-485-3558, ext 232 or by email at reidc@psac.com.

The application is available at the union office in Somerville House, room 1313. If you have any questions regarding this position please contact us.

Registration is now open OFL Women’s Leadership Summit

The Ontario Federation of Labour’s Women’s Committee will be hosting a Women’s Leadership Summit from December 10-12, 2012 at the Kempenfelt Centre in Barrie, Ontario.

This is a unique opportunity for women to come together with like-minded trade union and community Sisters to share information about skill building, strategy, and the incredible opportunities for women in the labour movement.

Women are now the majority of union members. Study after study show the future growth of the labour movement will primarily be women workers, partially women workers who are from equity seeking groups. The Summit will explore strategies to build women’s involvement in unions and strengthen the labour movement today and in the future.

What: OFL Women’s Leadership Summit

Where: Kempenfelt Conference Centre, 3722 Fairway Road, Innisfil, Ontario, L9S 1A5

When: December 10-12, 2012

Registration Fee: $100 (members are responsible for cost and room bookings)

Accommodations: To book your accommodations, please contact Christina Dawson christina@wetravel.net or Nora Mackie nora@wetravel.net, toll free at (888) 676-7747 or direct (613) 232-9908 Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Cost per person including meals is $166 per night single occupancy, or $139 per night double occupancy, plus applicable taxes.

Please have the attached form completed to register and email or send the form back to Sue Fratric sfratric@ofl.ca 416-443-7664.

If you have any questions or require further details, please contact Sister Carrol Anne Sceviour at csceviour@ofl.ca, office 416-443-7670, mobile 416-606-5046.

The application is available at the union office in Somerville House, room 1313. If you have any questions regarding this position please contact us.

Other Issues

Join us on Facebook and Twitter!

Join our group on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/10150128669460570/

Also follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/PSAC610


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for October 24, 2012

In this issue:
  • Issues 
    • ‘Lumpsum/Letter of Offer’ Confusion 
  • Past Events
    • Super Awesome Non-Boring Demo 
    • Working Group on Student Poverty Sessions 
  • Upcoming Events 
    • PSAC DCL Academic Conference – Register by November 1st, 2012 
  • Call out for Grievance Committee – Deadline October 29th, 2012 
  • Survey on Teaching Assistant Evaluations 
  • TANB Application Results, Fall 2002 
‘Lumpsum/Letter of Offer’ Confusion

Our union has been investigating problems with the application of “one-time payments” within the calculation of student funding support. More information about the particulars of this complicated situation are available HERE, on our website. If you think you have been affected, speak with a representative at the union office, SH 1313. 

Recognition of GSAs as GTAs

Progress has been made in relationship to the employer’s willingness to recognize GSAs as GTAs. It is the position of the union, that this recognition issue is a pay equity issue: GSAs do the same work we do, but do not receive lumpsum, hence they do it for less. If you, or anyone you know is hired as a GSA and yet works with undergrads in the capacity of a GTA, speak to a representative at the union office, SH 1313. We can help.

Overwork Protection

Marking season is upon us. Don’t forget to track your hours. If you believe that you will exceed the amount of hours you have been assigned to (140 hrs/term for a 10 hrs/week TAship or 70 hrs/term for 5 hrs/week TAship) we strongly advise you to notify the department that your hours is about to expire and in order for you to continue working they have to pay you overtime hours. If you need further assistance with this issue, speak with a representative at the union office, SH 1313.

Past Events:

Super Awesome Non-Boring Demo

On October 16th 2012, members of PSAC 610 staged a marking demonstration on Concrete Beach at Western University. Teaching Assistants raised awareness about working conditions and the constraints under which we are to provide quality feedback when grading assignments. Undergraduate passers-by were given the chance to mark essays strict time constraints, and afterwards they were asked for their reactions.

The event was well-received by passers-by and well-staffed in terms of member participation. It was a wonderful example of well-executed direct action that was effective in bringing our message home to those who took the time to listen or participate. Check out the video below from the event:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ep32NWLfWhk

Working Group on Student Poverty Sessions

PSAC Local 610 Student Poverty Research Project is off to a fantastic start!

The Student Poverty Research Project is now in full swing, collecting both qualitative and quantitative information about the economic status of graduate students at Western.

The University committed to a guaranteed funding of $12,000 in 2005. Since then, however, our income has only increased 0.97% annually - far less than inflation - and this is only if you have a full TAship (140 hours a month) and qualify for the full lump sum. International students and students with part-time TA contracts are even more vulnerable, and each year, the purchasing power of our incomes continues to decline.

Last week, several members participated in two working groups, sharing their stories and discussing how their earning power at Western have affected the quality of their research and their standard of living. A broad demographic, composed of both domestic and international students, parents, members of all divisions, racialized members, and members of both genders participated. This was invaluable in terms of collecting concrete and verifiable data for analysis, which will be part of a paper scheduled to be drafted by month's end.

Thank you very much to everyone who participated! And, if you are interested in participating in the project and would consent to being interviewed, please contact psac610@psac610.ca for more information.

Eileen Wennekers

Upcoming Events:

PSAC DCL Academic Conference – November 22 to November 25

This is the first year PSAC will be hosting a DCL Academic Conference about academic issues. Queens University (PSAC 901), University of Ontario Institute of Technology (PSAC 555), and our local (610/611), will be meeting together to discuss relevant issues with fellow academic leaders. This is a great opportunity for interested future union officers to learn more about the functioning of Unions in academic institutions.

The PSAC DCL Academic Conference will be here in London. Our local can send 5 delegates to the conference. Expenses will be covered!

Interested? Register by November 1st by emailing us at psac610@psac610.ca. First come first serve so don’t hesitate. If you have any questions, please contact us.

Grievance Committee Call-out – Deadline October 29:

The Grievance Committee assists in the co-ordination of potential Grievances.

The committee will be comprised of the President and Chief Stewards. Membership is open to all members in good standing providing they sign an NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement). A chair will be chosen from the members of the committee by the committee. Member in good standing is defined in section 2.7.C of the Bylaws.

Interested members must send an email to the interim chair of the Committee at president@psac610.ca (please cc psac610@psac610.ca) with a brief statement of their interest to be on the Committee before October 29, 2012.

Survey on Teaching Assistant Evaluations

Please be reminded we have an online survey about TA evaluations.

Have you ever had one? Should they be mandatory? How would you design an evaluation form? We want to know how these processes can be improved to better provide training and professionalization opportunities for our members. The survey can be found on the following link:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/8WFRQLN

Survey designed by Siobhan Watters.

TANB Application Results, Fall 2012

Applicants to the TA Needs Bursary have been informed of the results. The TANB committee regrets that it cannot fund all the applications and decisions made by the committee are final. Don't forget to apply for the second round of bursaries; the deadline is January 31, 2013! The new application is available on the PSAC 610 website.

The Scholarships and TANB Committee is still looking for new members, if you are interested, please communicate with the Secretary, Kevin Godbout, at secretary@psac610.ca, thank you! 


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for October 9, 2012

In this issue:

  • Issues 
    • Lumpsum Confusion 
    • GTA Recognition 
    • Overwork Protection 
  • Upcoming Events 
    • Bargaining Mobilization Assembly Workshop tomorrow night at 6pm in room HSB 9 – Important information for Stewards! 
  • How to organize a Steward Hospitality Event 
  • Working Group on Student Poverty Sessions 
  • How Can I Be Involved? 
Lumpsum Confusion 
The situation:We recognize there is confusion as to lumpsum payments and letters of offer. We are trying to get clarity; but we need members to come forward with their documentation. We have also had discussion with SGPS on this concern. At this time we have made a commitment to resolve these matters through informal discussion on a case by case basis.

What to do: Members are encouraged to come into the office 12-2 on Fridays to speak with officers. Alternatively, you can click here to find more detailed information.

GTA Recognition
The situation: There are graduate students working for departments in the capacity of TAs, insofar as they grade and/or do other duties as defined in the CA. However, they are not recognized as Union members. This means they are not entitled to their lumpsum, as well as other benefits such as food bank, EHP, and UHIP. Effectively they do the same work as we do, but get less for it. We don’t think this is fair. And as a union we are prepared to recognize and represent the individual cases of people who come forward. However, as they are not on the email list the employer supplies to us on October 1st, we have little to no way of contacting them.

What to do:
You can help by talking to people in your department and let them know that they can get help in the union office, room 1313 Sommerville House.

Overwork Protection
The situation:
Marking season is upon us. Members have come forward seeking advice in terms of their hours of work.

What to do:
If you think you have been given too much to do, within the hours you are being paid for, use the following calculation:

Number of students in class = X
How long it takes to grade an individual assignment = Y
Total Number of assignments to grade by ______ Marking Deadline = Z (it would be useful to know the student assignment submission deadline too)
X x Y x Z = Total Marking Time.

If you believe your workload doesn’t reflect the terms of your duties specification agreement, find someone in the union office and talk to us. We can help.

An Important detail
If you believe that you are being affected by a violation of the collective agreement, do not file a grievance before talking to someone—in person—who understands the principles of the “duty and right to fair representation”. If you are unsure, ask them; they have to tell you. At the same time be advised, departmental staff such as professors and administrators are not stewards. They don’t have that same obligation and as such may not have all the information that you are entitled to. 

· Union information is available on here: www.psac610.ca.
· Union representation is available in the office SH 1313.
· The President holds office hours on Tuesday from 12pm to 2pm, and Friday from 12pm to 2pm. Additional hours are available upon request. Email psac610@psac610.ca for Gabe’s availability.

Upcoming Events 

Bargaining Mobilization Assembly Workshop TOMORROW at 6pm in rm HSB 9

The Bargaining Mobilization Assembly will be hosting a bargaining mobilization workshop. This 3-hour workshop will teach you how to mobilize your colleagues in your department to become interested and involved in the bargaining process. You will learn how to talk to your colleagues and co-workers, including:

· how to talk about bargaining and its importance
· how to set-up one-on-one conversations
· how to keep a relationship going
· inoculation
· fact-finding in your department
· avoiding burn-out

By mobilizing our membership, we will have a strong union that can fight for our demands! Union officers will be there to discuss members’ issues.

Stewards, this is a great opportunity to learn about the importance of being a Steward!

Refreshments will be provided. 

Organize a Steward Hospitality Event 

The Steward Hospitality Event is an opportunity for stewards to host an informal social event at the Grad Club to engage the members of their department.

Just like last year, stewards can organize hospitality events on behalf of our union members in their own departments. If your department doesn’t have a steward, you can become one by nominating yourself. Click here to see which departments have steward. Click here for the nomination form. Organizing an event like this is a great way to get involved and have a say in the activities of the union. 

What to do:
If you are a steward, click here to learn how to organize an event.
Ask your steward to organize one for your department. 
If you don’t have a steward in your department, sign up by clicking here. 

Working Group on Student Poverty Sessions
For many of us, the funding package that we receive, including our TA wages, leaves us well below the poverty line, calculated at 2012 at $22,000 a year for a single person living in a community of 500,000 (http://www.accessibilitynews.ca/?p=2322 [1]). PSAC Local 610 is researching the economic status of our members in order to draft a position paper on student poverty. In addition to compiling and analyzing numerical data from various sources, the paper will incorporate qualitative data - real stories from real TAs about what it's like to live on $12,000 a year.

In order to get a comprehensive picture we are convening two sessions of a working group on graduate student poverty:

MONDAY, OCTOBER 15TH, 5 - 7 PM room TBA
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 16TH, 12 - 2PM room TBA

As at all PSAC Local 610 events, children are welcome, and a meal will be provided for those who contribute to the project by participating in these working groups. If you wish to share your story and are not able to attend at either of these times, individual interviews can also be scheduled through our amazing office manager, Super Conan, at psac610@psac610.com

How can I get involved
Be curious. Talk to people in your department. Inform yourself. There are many information resources available on our website, including the Collective Agreement, Bylaws, Steward nomination forms, as well as other documents. (www.psac610.ca)

Come out to one of our events.
Join a committee – click here for a list of committees, and email the committee chair.
Sign up and become a steward. (http://www.psac610.ca/stewards)
Organize a steward hospitality event at the Grad Club. click here


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for the week of Sept 24th 2012

In this issue: 

• Special Meeting – Wednesday, October 3rd 4:30-6:30 BGS rm. 0165
• Committees Call out! Application Deadline - Friday, September 28th, 2 pm 
• Problems concerning *revised* letters of offer and/or duties specification agreements? 
• Reminder: Steward Nomination Deadline – Friday, September 28th, 2 pm
• Reminder: Family BBQ - Sunday, September 23rd, 11:30 am to 1:30 pm, Grad Club
• Survey on Teaching Assistant Evaluations
• Tea with a TA!


Save the Date! Special Meeting on October 3rd in BGS rm. 0165

There’s a lot of business on the formal agenda of the Union this year. And we’re kicking things off with a special meeting for both stewards and the general membership on Wednesday, October 3rd, 4:30-6:30 pm in B&GS 0165 (Biological & Geological Sciences). On the docket, we’ll be discussing Steward Hospitality Events 2012-2013, our ongoing negotiations, and the general “State of the Union”. For more information, or to suggest other agenda items, email Gabe Elias (president@psac610.ca). Following the meeting, there will be followed by a reception at the Grad Club.

Committees Call out!

Join a Committee! This is our union, and becoming a committee member is a great way to be involved. Committee members play a crucial role as direct point of access for our union members who need information about University and Local policies, procedures, and benefits. Apply by emailing the chair of that committee (CC psac610@psac610.ca). Deadline for applying is Friday Sept 28th at 2:00pm. The following committees are seeking members:

Bylaws Committee
The Bylaws Committee reviews the Local’s Bylaws, proposes amendments to the Bylaws, and vets members’ amendments to the Bylaws. If interested email: Gabe Elias (president@psac610.ca)

Communications Committee
Members will assist in preparing and coordinating training sessions for the Local’s Stewards; preparing and facilitating biannual information sessions; evaluating existing communications strategies and assist in improving these strategies. If interested email: Nedal Mohamed (infochair@psac610.ca)

Finance Committee
The finance committee is a standing structural committee that collects data related to the financial goals and actual spending of the local and assist the treasurer in the performance of his duties including preparation of budgets. If interested email: Jubayer Chowdhury (treasurer@psac610.ca)

Women’s Committee
The Women’s Committee seeks to foster a greater sense of community among women graduate teaching assistants and advocates for improved accessibility, resources, and working conditions for women graduate teaching assistants. If interested email: Conan Masterson (psac610@psac610.ca) CC: Gabe Elias (president@psac610.ca)

Scholarship & Bursaries Committee
Committee members shall meet several times and coordinate efforts to choose the scholarship and bursary awardees. If interested email: Kevin Godbout (secretary@psac610.ca)

Political Action/Social Justice Committee
The work of the Political Action/Social Justice Committee addresses concerns in three contexts: the University of Western Ontario, Canada, and internationally and may also work with other progressive groups and coalitions to promote alternative policies which benefit workers, their families and communities. If interested email: Conan Masterson (psac610@psac610.ca) CC: Gabe Elias (president@psac610.ca)

Terms of Reference for these committees can be found online on the following link:

http://www.psac610.ca/committees

Problems concerning your letters of offer and/or duties specification agreement?

Unfortunately, we’ve been hearing about a number of problems regarding duties specification agreements and/or minimum funding agreements as specified by a letter of offer. To clarify a few things:

a) Lumpsum: This is payment mechanism designed to protect TA wages from potential clawbacks by the minimum funding agreement. In other words, the lump sum – or ‘one time payment’ as it is sometime referred to by various departments – cannot be included as part of your minimum funding offer. As specified by the colletive, it must be an additional payment made over and above any offer made to you prior to admission.

b) Revised letters of agreement: we have heard of a number of situations where TAs have been provided ‘revised letters’ that recondition the terms of their enrolment (in terms of funding and/or tuition) or their TA assignment. This is highly problematic, as it creates challenges for our members who have pursued a course of action based upon one set of information, only to have the material conditionsof their life, here, at UWO changed arbitrarily. It is the opinion of the union that, once accepted, a letter of offer – be it enrolment with a funding guarantee or a specific TA assignment – constitutes a binding contract that cannot be changed without your consultation. If you find yourself in a position where a revised letter has been forced upon you, speak up, you are not alone, and your union is here to help. We can, and will protect your workplace rights. If you need assistance in this regard email your chief steward and/or Gabe Elias (president@psac610.ca)

Reminder: Steward Self-nomination Deadline - Friday, September 28th, 2 pm

Don’t forget, you have one more week to sign-up to become a steward. More information regarding stewardship, as well as nomination forms, can found on our website:
http://www.psac610.ca/stewards 

After the deadline has passed, we use an acclamation process for those interested in filling vacant steward positions. Refer to our by-laws for more information or email, our CRO (cro@psac610.ca) 

Reminder: Family BBQ - Sunday, September 23rd, 11:30 am to 1:30 pm, Grad Club

The local is hosting a family friendly event that is open to the families of our members. Child friendly food and drink will be served (this will be a dry event).

Survey on Teaching Assistant Evaluations 

PSAC Local 610 wants to know what you think about TA evaluations. Have you ever had one? Should they be mandatory? How would you design an evaluation form? We want to know how these processes can be improved to better provide training and professionalization opportunities for our members. The survey can be found on the following link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/8WFRQLN

Survey designed by Siobhan Watters. 

Tea with a TA!

Many thanks to those who participated in this wonderful event. It was a great opportunity for our union to communicate with undergraduate students and USC outside the class room. Thanks go to:

Siobhan Watters, Atle Kjosen, Jennifer McDonald, Melanie Wright, Leif Schenstead-Harris, Ahmed Elatar, Anna Pope, Nedal Mohamed and John Giles and from USC: Alysha Li and Adam Fearnall


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin – Special Issue Thursday, September 6th

What's Going On?

If you've come by the union office lately, you'll notice that there is a lot of activity going on. September is always a busy month, and between negotiations, orientations, and some upcoming libations this month will be no exception. And as September ramps up into high gear, we wanted to bring to your attention some up and coming events -- Save the dates, come on out and get involved!!

In this issue:

• Bargaining Colloquium - Wednesday September 12th 4 pm - 7 pm at the Grad Club

• Annual Social Event - Thursday Oct. 4th, 6:30 pm, Grad Club

• Family BBQ - Sunday, September 23rd, 11:30 am to 1:30 pm, Grad Club

• Steward Nomination Call Out

Stay Tuned!: Next Issue, September 13th,features Committee Call Outs.

Bargaining Colloquium - Wednesday September 12th 4 pm - 7 pm at the Grad Club

As some of you may or may not know, our collective agreement is up for renegotiation. To date, the negotiation team has already sat down with the employer to table our non-monetary demands and the negotiations are ongoing. In an effort to maintain communication lines, we are hosting a bargaining colloquium -- it's a drop in session at the Grad Club where the brothers and sisters of PSAC Local 610 can meet with members of the Negotiating Team, the Bargaining Mobilization Committee, and the Executive Committee to learn about the collective bargaining process; the issues of the day; and what they can do if they want to be more involved. It's also an excellent opportunity for members to voice their concerns and be heard. Food and Beverage will be provided. And, as always, questions regarding negotiations can be directed to president@psac610.ca

Annual Social Event - Thursday Oct. 4th, 6:30 pm, Grad Club 

Our annual fall term party is Thursday Oct. 4th, 6:30 pm at the Grad Club. All members are welcome! Food and beverage will be served.

Family BBQ - Sunday, September 23rd, 11:30 am to 1:30 pm, Grad Club

The local is hosting a family friendly event that is open to the families of our members. Child friendly food and drink will be served (this will be a dry event).

Steward Nomination Call Out

Become a steward! This is our union, and becoming a steward is a great way to be involved. Stewards play a crucial role as direct point of access for members who need information about University and Local policies, procedures, and benefits. Nomination forms are available from our website, and are due by September 28th at 2 pm.
http://www.psac610.ca/stewards

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0BzGCvv37iZssTlc3Ym5jOF9FMms 


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for the week of Aug 27th 2012

In this issue:

• Katy Fulfer's End-of-The-Term Report

• Tea with a TA!

• Steward Recruitment Event - Wednesday September 5th, 5:30 pm @ the Grad Club

• Donation Drive for Rwandan Genocide Survivors


Katy Fulfer's End-of-The-Term Report

View outgoing-president Katy Fulfer's End-of-the-Term Video Report at the link below:

http://www.psac610.ca/news-and-events.

If visual media not accessible to you, please contact our office at psac610@psac610.ca. Gabriel Elias will assume the role of President on September 1.

Tea with a TA!

We are still looking for more TA’s to participate in “Tea with a TA” event. This event will be held on Friday Sept. 7th between 10:00am and 2:00pm at the Concrete Beach. 

If you are interested in participating in this event or if you want to know more information about it email the information chair Nedal Mohamed (infochair@psac610.ca) and the community alliance chair Jonathan Gils (communityalliance@psac610.ca). Refreshments will be served.

Steward Recruitment Event - Wednesday September 5th, 5:30 pm @ the Grad Club

Become a steward!

This is our union, and becoming a steward is a great way to be involved. That's why we're hosting an event to satiate the curiosity of every and any member who ever flirted with the idea of taking on a stewardship role. Did you know that every department is entitled to steward representation?

Stewards play a crucial role as direct point of access for members who need information about University and Local policies, procedures, and benefits. Importantly, steward involvement is also vital to maintain principles of democratic participation and transparency. So come on down to this event to learn more about how you can be involved. Being a steward is not necessarily a major time commitment, and there are certain perks that go along with the responsibility. Last year, for example, we started the amazingly popular and successful Steward Solidarity/Hospitality Program. Essentially, departmental stewards could host an event for their colleagues within their department, to help keep their brothers and sisters in the loop of what's going on, but also to improve a sense of collegiality and camaraderie within our working lives. If this appeals to you, come on down to the Grad Club and learn how you too can take part.

• Donation Drive for Rwandan Genocide Survivors

PSAC Local 610 is participating in a drive to collect items to support survivors of the Rwandan genocide. Prof. Amanda Grzyb, Faculty of Information& Media Studies is collecting items that will greatly improve the living conditions for genocide survivors who live in remote rural areas. She is looking for (a) old iPhones and Blackberries, and/or (b) Water bottles. 

A) Unlocked used smart phones are extremely useful for the caretakers of genocide memorial sites. Currently, many of them must travel 2-4 hours round-trip on a taxi-moto to get on-line and check email at an internet. Donated phones would allow them to get onlne using the cell phone network in their own villages. (Any donated phone should have all personal information wiped.)

B) Water bottles -- metal or plastic -- are extremely valuable for children who have no way to take water to school with them.

Any of the above items can be donated through the Union office. We're also taking school notebooks and pencils. 


PSAC Local 610 Bulletin for the week of Aug 20th 2012

In this issue:

• End of Katy Fulfer's term as president

• Tea with a TA!

• Upcoming Bursary Deadline

• Coffee with President Chakma- We want to hear from you!

• New website

• Office Hours- closed on Labour day

End of Katy Fulfer's term as president

Katy Fulfer's term as president ends on August 31st. Gabriel Elias will take over on September 1st. Katy will be conducting her end of end-of-the-year report by video on August 31st. If you would like to send Katy a question for her to address please email it to president@psac610.ca or send it via Facebook or Twitter (@katyfulfer) by August 27th.

Tea with a TA! 

The union will be holding a joint event with the University Student Council during undergraduate students' orientation week between 10:00am and 2:00pm on Friday Sept. 7th. At this event undergrads will have an opportunity to meet TAs from various departments outside the class room and learn more about their TA's and their role on campus. 

If you are interested in participating in this event or if you want to know more information about it email the information chair Nedal Mohamed (infochair@psac610.ca) and the community alliance chair Jonathan Gils (communityalliance@psac610.ca) by August 31st.

Refreshments will be served. The place for this event will be announced later. 

Upcoming Bursary Deadline

Please note members that the deadline for first term TANB bursaries is August 31st. Please find more details and the application form at the PSAC 610 site under Benefits: http://www.psac610.ca/benefits/ta-needs-and-bursary.

Some members have inquired concerning the terms of reference sent out for the Scholarship and TANB Bursaries Committee, which it inadvertently obfuscated the deadlines and disbursement of bursaries and scholarships. To clarify, there are two TANB bursaries application deadlines for the first and second terms on August 31 and January 1st respectively. The scholarship application deadline is March 15. The TOR is included again with this bulletin and includes the correction.

Coffee with President Chakma- We want to hear from you!

The local is participating in President Chakma's mid-term review. If you have comments to share please come to our drop in coffee-hour Monday August 27th from 1-2 pm in the local office.

New website

We have moved to a new website www.psac610.ca. Check it out! Please note that all of our emails now end with @psac610.ca and the general email is psac610@psac610.ca

Office Hours- closed on Labour day Starting Sept 1st we will switch back to regular office hours Monday- Friday 10:00am to 2:00pm. Please note that the office will be closed on labour day Monday Sept 3rd.





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