Simon Fraser University Staff Association

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Simon Fraser University Staff Association

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Description area

Dates of existence

1966 - 1974

History

The Simon Fraser University Staff Association was established in 1966 by staff on campus who felt that conditions and salaries at the university were in need of improvement. An association, rather than a union, was formed as staff felt that freedom of action within the university was preferable at the time. By 1968 the Staff Association was an officially recognized body of the university, and was registered under the Societies Act. The aims of the Staff Association, as given in its 1968 constitution, were to unite staff under a single organization capable of acting on its behalf, to communicate with administration on matters affecting staff, to obtain and improve the best possible conditions of employment, to have representation on university committees, and to encourage the continued education of its members. In 1971, the constitution was changed to read:

The primary object of the Association is to serve the common interests of the non-academic employees of Simon Fraser University who are not members of trade unions in all matters concerning wages, salaries, benefits, and conditions of employment in such manner as to promote the fair treatment of all such employees individually and as compared in general to other persons and groups of persons similarly employed at Simon Fraser University and in other parts of the Greater Vancouver area.

Membership in the Association was voluntary, although all eligible staff were encouraged to join in order to give it stronger support for voicing the opinions and needs of its members.

By 1974, some members of the university staff expressed interest in union representation. A Committee to Investigate Alternatives was formed to explore the possibilities of union representation, although the Staff Association executive did not support this group. Concurrently, a number of unions attempted to organize staff on campus: the Canadian Union of Public Employees, the Office and Technical Employees Union, and the Association of University and College Employees all campaigned to represent staff at SFU. In response the Staff Association decided to seek certification through the Labour Relations Board. On November 19, 1974 an election was held to determine if staff at SFU wanted a union, and if so, which union they wanted to represent them (the Staff Association or the Association of University and College Employees). Staff voted to have AUCE as their representative, and, as a result, the Staff Association began winding up its affairs. By December 1974 it had moved out of its offices, gave their surplus equipment and stationary to AUCE, and turned their records over to the university archives.

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