The University of Prince Edward Island and the UPEI Faculty Association have ratified a four-year agreement, the two parties announced Friday.
The agreement, tentatively reached earlier this month, was voted on by members of the Faculty Association’s Bargaining Unit #1 on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday of this week, and then approved by the University’s Board of Governors.
“By working together, we have achieved a fair and equitable agreement for our members that puts our salary base and benefits on a competitive footing with our colleagues at other Atlantic provinces’ universities,” said UPEI Faculty Association President Betty Jeffery.
The four-year deal marks a commitment by both the Faculty Association and University administration to work cooperatively to reach a fair deal, and which led to the agreement being approved only three months after the previous contract expired on June 30, 2012.
The agreement largely preserves existing terms but allows for a 7.25 per cent net salary increase—spread over four years. Additionally, there will be a 3 per cent increase to the salary to offset a corresponding higher contribution by the academic staff to the UPEI Pension Plan, putting their average level of contribution to 9.04 per cent.
Both the University and Faculty Association acknowledged that it was important to solve the pension shortfall situation and did so through a collateral process.
“On behalf of UPEI, I appreciate the efforts and hard work of both negotiating teams in putting the interests of our students at the forefront of their deliberations,” said UPEI President and Vice-Chancellor Alaa Abd-El-Aziz.
“As we face continued budget constraints, an underfunded pension, and challenging times ahead, I am extremely thankful that this agreement will allow UPEI to continue its tradition of providing quality higher education and thank all those who contributed to the process.”