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If you've been wondering if the vaccines help stop the spread of COVID-19 transmission, then there's some promising news from Public Health England (PHE). The study, which used both the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines, shows that even one dose of the vaccine may reduce household transmission by 50 percent.
"May the fourth be with you!" Wait... Revenge of the Sixth? (More nerd trivia —  the first May the fourth Star Wars days began in Canada) It's been six months since our AGM, and over a year since COVID started, so I wanted to update APSA members on a number of "APSA-wide" items that have been ongoing during that time.
Our survey was conducted in March and represents a snapshot of how our members were feeling at the time. APSA acknowledges that our members' concerns may change based on increased vaccination, lower COVID-19 cases and other factors. We had 775 members participate in this survey which is approximately half of all APSA members.  
Each month, our Advocacy Committee answers your questions about the AD 10 policies (aka, your terms and conditions of employment.)
Arbitrations and Grievances APSA and the University came to a mediated settlement regarding the Colin Taylor Award. Read the full settlement here. We are also in the process of negotiating a settlement on a Human Rights case.
Please give a warm welcome to these new APSA members who have joined us in the past month.   Bourgeois, Andre Patrick Residence Life Coordinator New to SFU AVPSI Residence Life  Associate VP, Students   Chang, Jessica Lindsey Coordinator, Marketing         
Imagine attending a meeting with your supervisor expecting the meeting to be about one thing, and it turns out to be about something completely different. You suddenly start feeling nervous. Maybe there's an HR advisor there wanting to discuss a work incident. Maybe you're being asked to sign a non-disclosure agreement, and you worry about what that means. Maybe you're in a meeting with Manulife about long-term disability, and they're asking you to sign a document that you're not sure is in your best interest. 
When APSA members made the move to remote work due to the pandemic, our IT staff quickly adopted Zoom, a video conferencing platform that made the mandatory changes much more viable. Zoom feels like a blessing and sometimes a curse. We can meet and stay connected, yet we all come up against back-to-back meetings on the platform, and many of us experience what's been dubbed "Zoom fatigue".  Why do we find video meetings so tiring?
Arbitrations and Grievances APSA and the University came to a mediated settlement regarding the Colin Taylor Award. Read the full settlement here. We are also in the process of negotiating a settlement on a Human Rights case.
Each month, our Advocacy Committee answers your questions about the AD 10 policies (aka, your terms and conditions of employment.) Hello, I'm Mike Peragine, an advocate on APSA's Advocacy Committee. On behalf of the Committee, I'm answering your question related to ESA manager versus non-manager classifications.  
Please give a warm welcome to these new APSA members who have joined us in the past month.   Bundock, Joel Robert Administrative Coordinator New to SFU SFU Athletics and Recreation Associate VP, Students   Chand, Brian Vimal Undergraduate Advisor and Recruiter Promotion Political Science Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences   Diwana, Livleen Executive Assistant     Promotion
Arbitrations and Grievances APSA and the University came to a mediated settlement regarding the Colin Taylor Award. Read the full settlement here. APSA has also successfully completed a settlement for one of our members regarding inappropriate discipline. We are unable to give detailed information due to privacy issues. We are also in the process of negotiating a settlement on a Human Rights case.
This conversation is more of a reminder/to-do list, so I'm going to get right into it: CRA — Home Office Expense Deductions A reminder of the tax deductions you can access if you are/were working from home during COVID. For more information, please see the dedicated Home Office Expenses sub-page of the SFU Finance department page.
Please give a warm welcome to these new APSA members who have joined us in the past month.   Chang, Vivian  Business Analyst Temporary Promotion Alumni Relations         Alumni Relations   Chireboah-Ansah, Robert       Coordinator Double MA Graduate Program Additional Job Global Communication Double MA Communication Arts Technology  
Each month, our Advocacy Committee answers your questions about the AD 10 policies (aka, your terms and conditions of employment.) Here is the Advocacy Committee Chair, Wanda Dekleva, to answer some of your questions about workplace issues.
Business owners and employees alike feel that employee tracking software is intrusive, but purchasing this type of software has grown over the past year due to COVID. Although employers have found that employees can get their work completed while not physically in the office, many companies still want evidence of high productivity. Is it legal to use monitoring software for employees? In Canada, as long as the employer fully informs staff that monitoring software is in place and how it works, they can legally monitor their employees. 
Interested in Pursuing Graduate Business Education? Tuition for the GDBA program is 100% waived for Continuing APSA members  
Please give a warm welcome to these new APSA members who have joined us in the past month.   Abelseth, Laila Marie  Officer, Safety Operations      New to SFU     FAS Office of the Dean Faculty of Applied Sciences   Abdelrazik, Nouran Mamdouh Abdelshafi Residence Life Coordinator
Resources: https://bcblackhistory.ca/ https://antiracism.utoronto.ca/black-history-month-2021/
Each month, our APSA Advocates answer your questions about workplace challenges, the AD 10 policies and how they’re applied. Questions? Submit them anonymously here. Hello, I'm Laya Behbahani, an advocate on APSA's Advocacy Committee. On behalf of the Committee, I'm answering your questions about your benefits and tuition waiver.  
According to Google Analytics, my most popular "Conversations with the President" article to date was the one on "Free Stuff and Discounts," so I thought I'd be dramatic when titling this post.
Arbitrations and Grievances APSA participated in the Colin Taylor mediation, which took place on January 18 -22, 2021. We also have one other arbitration on inappropriate discipline. Unfortunately, we can't disclose any details of the member arbitration due to confidentiality issues. 
Each month, our Advocacy Committee answers your questions about the AD 10 policies (aka, your terms and conditions of employment.) Here is the Advocacy Committee Chair, Wanda Dekleva, to answer some of your questions about workplace issues.
2021: Hold my beer. Since our AGM at the end of November and my last “Conversations with the President,” it seems like the world has taken two steps backwards instead of one step forward:
Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) is a month-long series of engagement opportunities hosted by the Sexual Violence Support & Prevention Office (SVSPO) in collaboration with SFU and FIC partners every January. The purpose of SAAM is to raise awareness about sexual violence and to empower SFU and FIC students, faculty, and staff to engage with this complex topic in meaningful ways.
Please give a warm welcome to these new APSA members who have joined us in the past month.   Adlakha, Sumit Information Technology Professional II New to SFU Project Management Office IT Services   Kroeker, Lori Michele Budget and Financial Analyst
Arbitrations and Grievances APSA is currently preparing for two arbitrations, the Colin Taylor Award arbitration, which will begin on January 18, 2021, and one other arbitration on inappropriate discipline. We can't disclose any details of the member arbitration due to confidentiality issues. 
1. Vacation time AD 10.8 You now have access to your yearly vacation allotment. Here's a table below for reference. Number of Calendar Years of Employment Length of Vacation Entitlement Zero (0) to Seven (7) years
I remember once, when I was very young, I went on a backpacking trip with my father. As great as it was to be with my dad, the trip was cold, rain-filled and miserable. On our last night, I lay tossing and turning in my sleeping bag willing the sun to rise, so that we could break camp and flee for home.
Each month, our APSA Advocates answer your questions about workplace challenges, the AD 10 policies and how they’re applied.
APSA is pleased to announce the new officers for the APSA Board of Directors. David Agosti was voted in as the 2021 president of APSA, Arlette Stewart was voted in as the new vice-president and Jasper Stoodley is your 2021 treasurer. Please take a moment to congratulate all the appointees. We know that they are dedicated and will be working hard for the interests of APSA members.  
Please give a warm welcome to these new APSA members who have joined us in the past month.   Bhunnoo, Ziad Business Systems Analyst New to SFU     Lifelong IT Services Lifelong Learning Unit   Chen, Winnie Research Accounting Analyst New to SFU
AGM APSA recently held its Annual General Meeting on November 24, 2020. It was held virtually on Zoom with just under 200 members attending. We discussed this year of COVID-19, advocacy and bargaining issues, our budget and more. Please read the 2020 AGM minutes for more details.
We've got you covered on what happened at the meeting.
Before heading off on holidays, have you taken note of these year-end items? Paid leave – Christmas closure AD 10.08 Once again, the University will be closed from December 25 - January 1. Continuing members will be paid for December 25 - January 1. Temporary members will be paid for December 25 - January 1 if the last day of your temporary appointment is after Christmas closure.
The Graduate Liberal Studies Program offered by SFU is an interdisciplinary program leading to the degree of Master of Arts in Liberal Studies. This is a part-time program, for working or otherwise busy adults, with classes offered during evening and weekend hours at SFU's downtown campus. Students have 3 – 4 years to complete their MA, either through coursework or thesis options.