On Friday, July 24, the APA negotiation team — Sherry Horeanopoulos (Fitchburg), Charlie Cianfarini (MCLA), Mark Powers (Framingham), Bret Seferian (MTA), Rosa Taormina and Michael Pelletier (Salem) — concluded bargaining with Salem management to agree to FY21 furlough program.
While the need of furlough under these conditions of pandemic and national economic uncertainly is never a pleasing agreement to make, I am relieved that the tiresome process is completed and a clearer picture of FY21 develops for the Salem APA. I am grateful for the support from this team which worked Friday into the evening, later than 8 PM. I found the news then untimely to announce with 137 APA members participating in furlough and relieved of reviewing email.
The scales of the agreement balanced favorably upon one fewer week participation. And agreement that APA will not be at risk of retrenchment in FY21.
In a list of highlights, included are:
· Total furlough participation is four weeks (not five weeks).
· Two weeks are required before the end of 2020, but three are possible (with application process for weeks in succession).
· November 16 check-point to determine if fourth week is necessary.
· APA members will not be impacted by the outcome of the other unions’ agreements.
· There is an agreement re-opener under the condition that the APA carries a greater burden, or serve greater weeks.
· There is an agreement re-opener under the condition that the institution receive specific pandemic relief.
· There will be no retrenchment of APA members under this agreement in FY21.
· We have requested under this agreement that a committee comprised of management and APA convene to discuss a better tuition and fees benefit.
Please review this document (attached) and feel welcome to raise questions and concerns. However, this is complete. I look forward to meeting with you in an upcoming meeting. But will be taking some time to digest all and plan myself, as we all should. The memorandum requires your planning with department be complete by September 30.
The memorandum of agreement can be viewed here. Expect Salem management to issue a community update to include the request form appendix.
In other news, it should come with some relief that the Vacation Accrual Deadline will be extended to December 31, 2020. This mention may not be the right place but will no doubt come into play for those with vacation hours in excess of 375 that are attempting to plan and include weeks of furlough—not easy. But I am glad to hear this deadline has been extended.