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Welcome from the Assistant Vice-President, Human Resources

Welcome to the employee handbook for the Confidential Professional Administrative Group at Laurier! I would like to take this opportunity to welcome any new employees and to thank all existing employees for the work you do and your contributions to Laurier.

Laurier is a wonderful place to work, with collaborative people who work in a collegial and supportive manner. We are passionate about Inspiring Lives of Leadership and Purpose amongst our students, alumni, faculty and staff. Working at Laurier provides you with many benefits which are focused on wellness, recognition, lifelong learning and professional development. We pride ourselves on our ability to maintain a positive work-life balance and embrace the culture of community that exists at all of our campuses. Our Employee Success Factors were created by employees from across the organization and truly capture the behaviours and commitments we value at Laurier.

A Successful Employee...

  • Collaborates to promote team and organizational success
  • Seeks opportunities for continuous improvement
  • Values relationships and community
  • Supports a culture of service
  • Models leadership and accountability

This handbook is meant to outline the main aspects of the employee-employer relationship in addition to the Employment Standards Act and will hopefully answer any questions you may have. However, if you have a question or a concern not addressed in the handbook, please do not hesitate to contact a member of the Human Resources (HR) team. Contact information can be found on our University intranet (connect.wlu.ca), Working at Laurier/Contacts.

Sincerely,

Pamela Cant
AVP, Human Resources

Introduction

This employee handbook has been prepared to assist non-academic employees in finding the answers to general questions they may have and to familiarize them with the university’s general approach to certain human resources issues. Employees should read it carefully and keep a copy for their records.

This handbook replaces all previous handbooks issued by the university, and all previous handbooks are rendered inoperative effective immediately. Handbooks are reviewed annually.

Remember, this handbook is only intended to provide a general summary of information concerning certain human resources issues. Neither the information in this handbook, nor any other communication by management with respect to this handbook or its contents, forms part of an employment contract with the university. The university has the right to change any information set out in this handbook, without consulting, obtaining agreement, or providing with notice of any kind to employees.

For questions regarding an employee’s personal employment situation or Wilfrid Laurier University employee practices that are not addressed in this handbook, contact Human Resources at 519.884.0710 x2007.

Guiding Principle for Treatment

It is the intent of the University to provide overall working conditions, compensation and benefits for the Confidential Professional Administrative Group that are fair and equitable with the employment practices of the rest of the University. It is the responsibility of the Board of Governors, supported by the President and Human Resources, to pro-actively ensure this.

This document is intended as a guide for employees. It is not intended to circumscribe all aspects of the employment relationship. If there is any difference between this handbook and any official document or policy of the university the official document will apply. Further information on specific HR policies can be found on the HR web page.

The Human Resources department has the responsibility to monitor the effectiveness of current practices and recommend changes if necessary. Employee views and suggestions are encouraged.

Definitions

Board

The Board of Governors of Wilfrid Laurier University, as provided for in the Act.

Child

Except where otherwise indicated, will include a natural, adopted or step child of the employee who is under 26 years of age and either lives at home or is financially supported by the employee.

Coordinator/Leadhand

Oversees the work of others (staff /student positions) within a defined functional service area, while performing the duties of that service area. Implements services and co-ordinates activities with other staff. Has a thorough knowledge of the service area’s purpose, program, and operations.

Continuing Position

A position, either full-time or part-time, where no ending or renewal date is stated at the time of posting.

Dean/Department Head

The senior academic/administrative head of a faculty/department or a person designated to act in this capacity.

Employee Success Factors

Five guiding principles that set criterion by which employees can evaluate and strive to improve themselves.

Essential Position

A position that has been deemed by the University as required to work on a day that the University is declared temporarily closed. At the Manager’s discretion, employees may be assigned to work.

Full-Time Employee

One whose regularly scheduled hours of work are twelve hundred and fifty (1250) or more per year.

Internally

Is understood to mean within the Confidential Professional Administrative Group.

Limited-Term Position

A position, either full-time or part-time, where an ending date is stated at the time of posting and where there is no employment commitment beyond the specified term. Typically these positions are for durations of up to approximately 12 months, but no less than three (3) months.

Manager

Responsible for planning and directing the work of a group of individuals, monitoring their work, and taking corrective action when necessary. The term Manager in this handbook refers to the employees immediate supervisor, regardless of title.

Parent

Is inclusive of step-parents.

Part-Time Employee

One whose regularly scheduled hours of work are less than twelve hundred and fifty (1250) hours per year.

President

The President of the University.

Recurring Position

A continuing position, either full-time or part-time that incorporates a regularly scheduled commencement and cessation of employment.

Reference Salary

Is the nominal annual salary to which the employee would be entitled if not on a leave or reduced salary program.

Salary

Is the annual gross salary paid to an employee excluding overtime payments and other supplementary payments.

Senate

The Senate of Wilfrid Laurier University, as constituted pursuant to the Act.

Spouse

Except where otherwise indicated, is a person married to an employee, or cohabiting with an employee continuously for a period of not less than one year, inclusive of same sex partners.

Supervisor

Responsible for the day-to-day performance of a small group. Experienced in the work of the group and also performs those duties. Guides the team towards its goals, ensures that all members of the team are productive, and resolves problems as they arise. Provides functional instruction and guidance, as well as day to day supervision.

Temporary Position

An appointment made where assistance is needed during specific periods of temporary rush or for specific special assignments or where replacements are needed for employees who are absent for reasons such as leaves of absence, illness, paid holidays or vacation. Typically these positions do not exceed 14 weeks.

University

Wilfrid Laurier University, and its designates, the Board of Governors of Wilfrid Laurier University, or any officers authorized to act on behalf of the Board, and is hereinafter referred to as the university.

Recognition

The Confidential Professional Administrative Group includes all non-unionized employees of Wilfrid Laurier University who are considered confidential but do not have managerial accountability.

Non-union employees except those considered confidential or have managerial accountability should refer to the Professional Administrative Group Handbook for information specific to their employment.

Custodial/Maintenance employees should refer to the Facilities and Operations Group Handbook for information specific to their employment.

Special Constables should refer to the Special Constable Service Handbook for information specific to their employment.

Management level employees should refer to the Management Group Handbook for information specific to their employment.

Business Operations

The university has the right to manage its affairs subject to the limitations of this handbook.

Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the university has the exclusive right and responsibility:

  • to manage its business;
  • to maintain order, discipline, and efficiency including the right to plan, direct, and control the workforce;
  • to hire, classify, promote, transfer, demote, lay off, or recall employees, and to expand or reduce the size of the workforce;
  • to alter, combine, or cease any operation, function, or service.

The university has the right to establish and enforce reasonable rules and regulations and to discipline, suspend, or discharge employees for just cause.

The university will exercise the foregoing rights in a manner that is fair, reasonable, and consistent with the terms and provisions of this handbook. In the event that it is alleged that the university has exercised any of the foregoing rights contrary to the provisions of this handbook, the matter may be the subject of conflict resolution procedures.

No Discrimination

It is agreed that there will be no discrimination, interference, restrictions, coercion, or intimidation exercised on or practiced by the university or the Confidential Professional Administrative Group in regard to any matter associated with the terms and conditions of employment by reason of race, creed, colour, sex, gender, marital status, ethnic origin, ancestry, place of origin, political or religious affiliation, sexual orientation, citizenship, age, record of offences, family status, disability, or language (unless a bona fide occupational requirement of a position).

Employee Files in the Human Resources Department

Personnel Files

The university will maintain accurate personnel records. Employees should advise the Human Resources department immediately if there is any change in personal data, such as name change, address or telephone number.

There shall be one official personnel file for each employee and that this file will be maintained in the Human Resources Department. The official personnel file shall include records relating to both the employment status of the employee, including, but not limited to, the original application form/resume, job posting, offer letter, job and salary history and job performance documentation as well as any documentation related to discipline and probation. The university shall notify the employee of any addition to their official personnel file that pertains to performance.

Employees will have the right to examine their official personnel files, exclusive of any letters of reference which have been provided on a confidential basis, by application to the Human Resources department during normal business hours. Any letters related to disciplinary issues that are eighteen (18) months or more old will be removed from the personnel files and reference will not be made to them, provided that no similar disciplinary documents relating to similar problems have been added to the personnel files during that period.

Employees may supplement the contents of their personnel files with documents related to their employment by forwarding such documents to the Human Resources department.

Confidentiality of Personnel Files

The security and confidentiality of personnel files will be the responsibility of the Office of the Assistant Vice-President: Human Resources.

Access to personnel files will be limited to the employee, staff in the Human Resources department and to the employee's current manager and other authorized university officials in connection with personnel, administrative and/or labour relations matters.

When the Human Resources department receives requests for personal or employment-related information regarding an employee from an external agency, it will confirm employment only. Additional information will only be divulged with the written authorization of the employee.

Employee Health Files

All employee health files, including physician statements requested for sick leave will be kept in an area separate from all other personnel files and under secure conditions. Access will be limited to authorized persons within the Human Resources Department.

The Safety, Health, Environment and Risk Management (SHERM) department is responsible for the administration of the WSIB program and its related files. These files will be kept in a secure location and accessed solely by authorized personnel in that department.
Access to any other person(s) will only be provided with the prior approval of the employee.

Onboarding

Employee orientation is a process, not an event, that begins with an individual’s first experience with the university. The onboarding process includes an introduction to our Employee Success Factors, and continues with personal and professional goals and objectives that can be enhanced by in-house training and development opportunities.

The Employee Success Factors reflect an important set of criteria against which you can evaluate and strive to improve yourself thereby continuously strengthening our university.

A successful employee:

  • Collaborates to promote team and organizational success
  • Seeks opportunities for continuous improvement
  • Values relationships and community
  • Supports a culture of service
  • Models leadership and accountability

An essential workshop for each new employee is to participate in “Understanding the Employee Success Factors.” This workshop is scheduled on an ongoing basis.

At the beginning of your employment, Human Resources will provide you with information on the following:

  • Benefits/Pension
  • Payroll
  • Leave Reporting
  • Training Opportunities

Your manager will orient you with your department, campus and co-workers. Our university intranet (connect.wlu.ca) is an excellent resource for processes and services available on campus.

Your career advancement is driven by your personal performance and development plan and is supported by the university’s commitment to grow and develop its employees through coaching and professional development opportunities.

Recruitment and Selection

In the recruitment and selection of all employees, the University is committed to hiring the best qualified person for all positions within the Confidential Professional Administrative Group. Consideration will be given to candidates that model the University’s Employee Success Factors and have demonstrated the required skills and competencies to perform the job. The University recognizes the worth and dignity of all candidates by providing equal opportunity for employment, encourages fair and open competition while ensuring all contractual and legislative requirements are met, and encourages its employees to realize their career goals and their full potential.

Hiring Process

Position Posting
  • The University will endeavour to fill all vacancies with the best qualified candidate. All positions will be posted internally for five (5) days. At the discretion of the University, a position may be posted internally and externally concurrently to ensure a sufficient pool of qualified applicants.
  • Any staff person working within the Confidential Professional Administrative Group in a continuing or limited term position is eligible to apply for an internal posting once they have successfully completed their probationary period.
Application Process

Applicants should submit an updated resume with their application letter as per the instructions on the posting notice by the closing date of the competition.

Selection Process

Only those candidates meeting the minimum qualifications will be considered for an interview. The hiring committee will decide whether any applicant should be interviewed.

The University will make its selection decision based on the applicant deemed to be most qualified with regard to the required skills, ability, relevant past performance, and qualifications, as outlined in the job posting.

With the prior approval of their manager, an employee in a continuing or recurring position who accepts a limited term position will have the option to return to their previous position upon completion of the limited term position.

Successful candidates will be provided with an offer of employment that will include the following:

  • Job Title (with reference to the Job Description in the posting)
  • Compensation Package, including Benefits Eligibility
  • Classification of Employment
  • Full-time/Part-time
  • Salaried/Hourly
  • Pay Rate

Future changes will be discussed with the employee and formalized with a written letter from the manager and copied to Human Resources Department.

Probationary Period

From the most recent date of employment, newly hired Confidential Professional Administrative Group staff, or staff moving into a new position, in salary bands EX-A to EX-E will be on probation for a period of three (3) months. For newly hired Confidential Professional Administrative Group staff, or staff moving into a new position, in salary bands EX-F and above, the probationary period will be six (6) months.

Employees and their managers should meet early in the employee’s employment to establish mutually agreeable probationary goals. Regular meetings should be held throughout the probationary period to review the employee’s performance against those goals.

If performance is deemed to be satisfactory, a letter indicating the employee had a successful probationary period will be sent. If the Employee’s progress and performance is deemed to have been unsatisfactory or an additional assessment period is required, the Director/Manager may extend the probationary period or discontinue employment.

Trial Period

Staff moving into a new position will be subject to a trail period. The purpose of a trial period is the University an opportunity to access the ability of the employee to perform the duties of the new position to reasonable expectations. The employee will receive appropriate job instruction and training during the trial period. There will be a trial period of eight (8) weeks for positions up to and including EX-E and EX-F and above, a trial period of twelve (12) weeks. At the manager’s discretion, the trial period may be reasonably extended.

Job Evaluation System

All jobs are evaluated using the Hay Evaluation Method to determine the appropriate salary band. The Hay Method is the most widely used job evaluation system in the world and is comprised of four standard factors: Know-How, Problem Solving, Accountability and Working Conditions. These factors are used by Human Resources to analyze and evaluate the skill, effort, responsibility and working conditions inherent in each job.

There are a number of conditions under which a job will be evaluated:

  • When a new job is created
  • When an existing job has evolved/changed significantly, impacting one or all of the job evaluation factors
  • When five or more years have passed since the job was last evaluated

Please refer to the Confidential Professional Administrative Group Compensation Policy for further details. Additional information can also be found under the Compensation section of this handbook.

Employment Equity

The university agrees to remain committed to providing a workplace environment that is free from discrimination in accordance with university Policy 8.4. The preamble reads:

In Ontario, it is public policy, supported by law, to recognize the dignity and worth of every person, and to provide for equal rights and opportunities without discrimination.

Policy

  1. The university is committed to provide equal employment opportunity to all individuals including any groups designated by federal or provincial legislation; it is committed to providing a workplace free from discrimination. The university therefore adopts, for purposes of this policy, Section 5(1) of the Ontario Human Rights Code (1981), and any amendments thereto. This provision provides that "every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to employment without discrimination because of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, age, record of offenses, marital status, same sex partnership status, family status or disability."
  2. The university is committed to promote employment equity within the university community, and to eliminate any barriers that reduce or prevent employment equity.
  3. The provisions of this policy are expressly subject to any agreements with unions or employee associations to which the university is a party.

Harassment/Discrimination

Harassment is defined in Ontario’s laws as "engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome.” Generally, these comments or conduct must be related to one of the prohibited grounds such as race, sex, colour, ancestry, place of origin, ethnic origin, marital status, same sex partner status, sexual orientation, age, disability, citizenship, family status or religion.

Harassment is not:

  • Good natured gesturing when both parties find the conduct acceptable
  • Personality or interpersonal conflicts
  • Office flirtation when there is no perceived power imbalance and it is mutually acceptable.
  • Normal exercise of supervisory responsibilities including work assignment, performance feedback, training, coaching and/or discipline intended to support daily organizational activities. There is the expectation that these duties will be carried out in an appropriate, respectful and judicious manner.

It is expected that all employees will act in accordance with university Policy 6.1. The preamble reads:

The university is devoted to learning, research, scholarship, creativity, professional expertise, and personal development in a student-centred environment. The university is committed to providing an environment for study, teaching, research work and recreation for all members of the university community that is supportive of professional and personal development and free from all forms of harassment and/or discrimination outlined in the Ontario Human Rights Code as follows:

Section 5.1: Every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to employment without discrimination because of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, age, record of offences, marital status, family status or disability.

Section 5.2: Every person who is an employee has a right to freedom from harassment in the workplace by the employer or agent of the employer or by another employee because of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, age, record of offences, marital status, family status or disability.

Section 7.2: Every person who is an employee has a right to freedom from harassment in the workplace because of sex by his or her employer or agent of the employer or by another employee.

Section 7.3: Every person has a right to be free from:

    • a sexual solicitation or advance made by a person in a position to confer, grant or deny a benefit or advancement to the person where the person making the solicitation or advance knows or ought reasonably to know that it is unwelcome; or
    • a reprisal or a threat of reprisal for the rejection of a sexual solicitation or advance where the reprisal is made or threatened by a person in a position to confer, grant or deny a benefit or advancement to the person.

As such, the university does not condone behaviour that may undermine work relationships or academic achievement and by this policy declares that it will not tolerate any form of harassment and/or discrimination. Each member of the campus community is responsible for helping to create an environment which is harassment and/or discrimination free as both work and learning can best be accomplished in an environment of understanding and mutual respect for the dignity and rights of each individual. The university recognizes its responsibility to deal quickly, fairly and effectively with harassment and/or discrimination should it arise. The university accepts responsibility for the establishment of procedures for dealing with allegations of and/or recurrence of harassment and/or discrimination.

Employees are encouraged to contact the senior advisor, Dispute Resolution and Support with any concerns.

Respectful Workplace

Laurier is committed to the maintenance of a civil workplace. Promoting civility and respect and early intervention will reduce the risk of incivility, including workplace harassment and violence. Whenever conflicts arise, employees of Wilfrid Laurier University are encouraged to deal directly with the other person(s) who are involved to respectfully engage in dialogue to achieve resolution.

Wilfrid Laurier University has established resources and a process to facilitate achieving a respectful workplace to foster clear communication and candor, facilitate respectful interactions and yield solutions of mutual agreement.

The Employee Issue Resolution Process can be found on the university intranet (connect.wlu.ca) under Employee Groups and Resources.

Employment Accommodation Policy

It is expected that all employees will act in accordance with university Policy 8.7 approved by the Board of Governors.

The following is a summary of the policy.

Laurier is committed to providing equal treatment with respect to employment without discrimination because of race, ancestry, place of origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, age, record of offence(s), marital status, family status, disability, colour or ethnic origin as described by the Ontario Human Rights Code.

The university has both a legal and moral obligation to accommodate the needs of its employees so that barriers to equal participation are eliminated wherever possible.

Definition

Accommodation means adjusting or modifying the work environment, or the way the work is done, to address the individual needs of employees who would otherwise suffer discrimination. It is the University’s duty to take steps — to the point of undue hardship to the university — to adjust or modify the work environment or the method of doing work in order to address the individual needs of employees and prospective employees.

Principles of Employment Accommodation

In order to meet the needs of individuals affected, the overriding principles of approach should be those of:

  • Individualization: designing accommodation to meet the specific circumstances of each employee or job applicant.
  • Partnership: involving the person requiring the accommodation, administrators and managers of the university, unions and any medical practitioners or other third parties with specialized expertise.
  • Consultation: involving those in the partnership in development of the accommodation plan.
  • Inclusion: ensuring that the person to be accommodated is involved in the process and plan design.
  • Respect for confidentiality and dignity.

Accommodating Persons with Disabilities

The most common form of accommodation is for persons with disabilities.

A person requiring accommodation due to a disability must make a request to his/her dean or manager and Human Resources.

As outlined in the Employment Accommodation Policy, an accommodation plan will then be prepared, with input from the employee and (where applicable) the employee’s union representative. All parties are expected to work together to establish objectives for the individual’s accommodation plan, to explore the range of accommodation options available, and to develop criteria that will be used to select from among the various options.

In some cases, it will be reasonable to accommodate an individual in another position or to have a job re-designed. The university must accommodate the disability needs of an individual unless it can be demonstrated that no appropriate accommodation exists, or that providing the accommodation would cause undue hardship to the employer, or that a health and safety risk to others would outweigh the benefits of the equality.

Accommodating Religious Observance

Beliefs, convictions and practices rooted in religion, as opposed to those that are secular, socially based or conscientiously held, are protected. Broadly defined, religion typically involves a particular and comprehensive system of faith and worship, and tends to involve a belief in the divine, superhuman or controlling power.

Persons who celebrate their religion on days that would otherwise be working days need to be accommodated in order to practice their religion. It is equitable that people who celebrate religious holidays which conflict with their regular work schedule be allowed to take time off for their religious observance.

A person requiring accommodation for bona fide religious obligations should notify his/her dean, chair, director or manager as early as possible so that alternate plans can be made. These plans may involve rescheduling of work, or time off with or without loss of pay depending on existing provisions.

Environmental/Occupational Health and Safety

The university is committed to the occupational health and safety of employees and in providing a safe work environment at all times. This commitment encompasses striving to identify and minimize workplace hazards and the prevention of work-related injuries and illnesses, including ergonomic related injuries. The university will operate and the employees shall work in compliance with the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA), Environmental Protection Act, their regulations, and any applicable municipal, provincial and/or federal legislation. The university and the employees shall make every reasonable effort to prevent personal injury, and to maintain safe working conditions. The university will make every effort to ensure that all employees comply with the legislation and with the occupational health and safety practices, procedures and policies established by the university.

Safety, Health, Environment and Risk Management (SHERM)

Safety, Health, Environment and Risk Management (SHERM) is mandated to support the university's strategic goals, innovation and excellence. This is achieved by integrating health, safety and environment into the university's culture and by guiding the community in achieving due diligence. SHERM's primary role is to develop, promote and implement best practices in loss prevention, mitigation and operational risk management; manage the university's overall health and safety program with the goal of preventing occupational injuries and illness; and develop and implement programs and procedures to meet all of the requirements, duties, and standards set by the OHSA and the Regulations for Industrial Establishments, the Environmental Protection Act and all other applicable Federal and Provincial legislation.

Workplace Violence

Harassment and/or violence will not be tolerated, accepted or condoned by Laurier. No person shall engage in violent conduct or make threats of violence, implied or direct, on university property or in connection with the university business or workplace. To establish this commitment, Laurier has implemented a Workplace Violence Prevention Policy (Policy 7.18) and program.

Joint Health and Safety Committee

To assist in this process, the Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC) will function as mandated in the OHSA. With the assistance of the director of SHERM, the JHSC will help to stimulate awareness of safety issues, recognize workplace hazards, and make recommendations to deal with these hazards.

Right to Refuse Unsafe Work

In accordance with the OHSA, an employee may refuse to work or do particular work where they have reason to believe that the work is likely to endanger them. In this case, the employee shall immediately notify their manager. No employee will be disciplined for exercising their right to refuse unsafe work in accordance with OHSA.

Training

The university will provide safety training to employees and the employees will participate in such training. Training deemed necessary by the director of SHERM will be made available to all employees.

Personal Protective Equipment

The university agrees to provide protective equipment and clothing when required by the OHSA and/or university policies, and to ensure that safety equipment, materials and protective devices are maintained in good condition.

Safe Operation of Equipment

Managers, in consultation with SHERM will identify equipment that represents a level of hazard sufficient to warrant formal operating information and instructions. Any employee who is required to operate such equipment will receive information and instruction by the University to ensure the health and safety of the employee and the safe operation of the equipment.

First Aid Regulation

The Workplace Safety and Insurance Act (R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 1101) requires that the workplace contain first aid stations and that the workplace have workers certified in first aid to provide treatment when needed. The university will provide training to at least the number of employees required by the regulations, and will offer training as resources permit to additional employees. Employees who attend first aid training will be provided with time off with full compensation and benefits. A list of qualified first aid personnel will be maintained at the SHERM website.

Ergonomics

All employees must have a comfortable and safe work environment that does not adversely affect their health.

If an employee has concerns about the ergonomics of their workstation, a request for an ergonomic assessment for their station will be made in writing to the employee's immediate manager. This request will not be unreasonably denied.

The employee's manager will forward an authorized written request for the ergonomic assessment to SHERM. Requests will be directed a member of the Ergonomics Assessment Group (EAG) to conduct the assessment within one month of the receipt of the written request. Recommendations will be provided in writing to the employee and the employee's immediate manager. Follow-up assessments by the EAG will occur as needed.

Accident/Incident Reporting

A workplace accident is a disablement that arises out of and in the course of employment. To reduce the overall negative impact of an accident, circumstances must be carefully investigated to gain information that will enable the prevention of other undesirable events. Therefore all accidents involving Laurier staff, faculty, students, visitors and contractors must be reported to SHERM by completing an Accident/Incident Report. Employee accidents resulting in a visit to a health care professional must be received by SHERM within 24 hours of the accident.

Fire Alarm Procedures and Fire Safety Plans

Employees must follow the approved fire alarm procedures in the event of a fire or fire alarm. Fire alarm procedures are posted at all emergency pull stations and in every class room on campus. In addition, it is the responsibility of every employee to be familiar with the fire safety plan and designated safe area for the building’s they work in. In the event that you are unable to follow the approved fire alarm procedures due to a disability, please contact the AODA officer at accessibility@wlu.ca to have an individualized evacuation plan created.

Talent and Organizational Development

Recognizing the value of continuous improvement and investment in skill development, Talent & Organizational Development (T&OD) collaborates with Laurier leaders to facilitate the process of building capacity and delivering solutions to enhance individual and organizational effectiveness.

Members of the T&OD team are available to consult with managers on topics relating to individual employee/team development, group needs assessments and the design of interventions to enhance team cohesion and performance.

Employees are encouraged to attend T&OD workshops and learning events offered in-house through the learning calendar in consultation with their manager/supervisor. A learning plan template is available and strongly recommended to be completed when determining what learning opportunities are most appropriate.

Employees, who participate in seminars, conferences, conventions, and workshops at the request of the university, and in consultation with their manager/supervisor, will do so without loss of compensation or benefits. Registration fees will be paid by the university, and employees incurring travel expenses will be reimbursed in accordance with the university's Travel Expense Policy.

For more information, please refer to the university intranet (Connect), Working at Laurier/Employee Development and Recognition.

Hours of Work

The regular hours of work for the Confidential Professional Administrative Group staff are subject to periodic review and revision.

The university's normal work period will be seven (7) hours per day excluding a one (1) hour unpaid lunch period, and thirty-five (35) hours per week.

The working schedule of individual employees will be determined by the employee’s immediate manager in consultation with the employee, when possible. An alternative schedule may be in place at the time of hire, or may need to be developed at a later date, due to departmental needs.

Breaks

Employees are allowed one fifteen (15) minute rest period for each three (3) hours worked, at times arranged with their immediate manager.

Work performed during rest periods will not be considered as work in excess of an employee's normally scheduled work hours and therefore will not be eligible for overtime compensation. These rest periods cannot be accumulated or banked and taken as paid time off except as provided for elsewhere in this Agreement. 

Flexibility in Hours of Work

The university recognizes the importance of helping employees balance their work and personal responsibilities. Therefore, employees may work flexible hours (i.e. altering starting and stopping times) subject to the following conditions:

  • Departments have an obligation to provide the highest level of service possible to the broader University community. Furthermore, the university has certain operational requirements that must be met, including having a sufficient number of staff available during the hours that a department is open. Any request for flexible hours must consider these obligations and requirements and may be denied by the University if service or operational requirements is adversely affected.
  • Requests for flexible working arrangements must be made, in writing, to the employee’s manager at least three (3) weeks prior to the desired start date. Requests for flexible working arrangements shall not be unreasonably sought nor denied.
  • An agreement for an employee to work flexible hours shall not be considered to be an ongoing commitment. Agreements to work flexible time may be time limited or may be terminated by the employee or the manager.
  • Flextime is an arrangement, initiated by employees and approved by managers, whereby employees can vary the scheduling of their working hours. Employees on flextime will continue to work their normal work period of seven (7) hours per day and thirty-five (35) hours per week.
  • A compressed work week is an arrangement initiated by employees and approved by managers, whereby employees can complete their weekly working hours in a period of other than five (5) working days provided that the employees work their normally scheduled seventy (70) hours in a pay period. Compressed work week arrangements are available for the period of May 1 to Aug. 31 of each year.

On-Call

An employee may be assigned in advance to on call status by their manager during a period when they have completed their normal work day and have left the University premises. While on call, an employee shall make himself/herself readily available to the University for potential call back to deal with an urgent situation.

An employee assigned to on-call status by their manager shall receive additional compensation in the amount of one (1) hour at their regular hourly rate of pay for each evening they are on-call during the week (Monday – Thursday). Employees will receive two (2) hours of compensation at their regular hourly rate for each unit of the weekend they are on call. For the purposes of this provision, the weekend is broken down into two units:

  • Friday after the close of the employee’s workday until Saturday at midnight and;
  • From midnight on Saturday until the beginning of the employee’s workday on Monday.

Employees required to come into work while on-call will also be entitled to call-back pay as outlined below.

Payment for on-call status shall not be included in the computation for overtime wages.

When on-call, the employee must be accessible at all times and must immediately notify his/her manager if inaccessible. If inaccessible, on-call pay shall be forfeited. An employee cannot be designated on-call for more than seven consecutive days however he/she may be on-call for 24 hours on each of those days.

An employee who is assigned to on-call status and cannot be reached or does not report within 30 minutes of being contacted, shall not receive on-call pay for that day, and may be subject to discipline.

An otherwise eligible employee will not receive on-call compensation if performance of the duties is an extension of the regular workday or workweek.

Essential employees are not automatically assigned to on-call status.

On-call assignments will be allocated among eligible employees on a rotating basis as scheduled by the manager.

Call-Back

Employees who have left the university premises, and are subsequently required to return to work will receive call back pay.

The compensation for call-back will be with a minimum of three (3) hours compensation at their applicable overtime rate or the actual hours worked at their applicable overtime rate, whichever is greater.

Reduced Work Program

During and employee’s working career, circumstances and conditions frequently change that might best be addressed by a revision in the employee’s work arrangement with the University. The objective of this policy is to facilitate such arrangements where modifications can be accommodated to the mutual satisfaction of both the employee and the University. All employees in a full-time continuing position will be eligible to request participation in this program.

Reduced work programs may take the form of a shorter work year, a shorter work week, or a shorter work day. However, this program will not apply if it would result in an employee becoming subject to part-time status.

To request participation in the Reduced Work Program, an employee will submit a letter of application to their manager with a copy to the Human Resources Department.

The application will include:

  • The period of time for the reduced workload or work period.
  • A detailed plan of the nature of the reduction.
  • The reasons supporting the request.
  • Any other conditions deemed relevant.

The manager will consider the employee’s needs in light of operational needs and workload implications.

Once the reduced work program has been mutually agreed to by the employee and their manager, a recommendation will then be forwarded to the appropriate Vice-President for a decision. The details of the approved reduced work program will be confirmed in writing to the employee by the manager.

The employee may opt to receive salary payments only during the actual time worked or have them spread over the entire work reduction period, and will advise the Human Resources Department of their intention, in writing.

Benefit plans and benefit coverage will be continued during the reduced work program. While on the reduced work program, the University and Employee will continue to pay all applicable premiums, which will be based on the Employee's Reference Salary, unless otherwise stated in this section. The contributions and coverage under the Long Term Disability Plan shall be based on the employee’s actual salary.

The employee may elect to discontinue participation in the Pension Plan during non-work periods of one (1) month or more in duration, but must advise the Human Resources Department of their intention in writing. Pensionable service will be based on participation in the plan subject to Income Tax Act Regulations.

Vacation accrual will be pro-rated in accordance with the reduced work program.

Sick leave entitlements will be pro-rated in accordance with the reduced work program. Sick leave will only be used during a period when the Employee is scheduled to work.

Payment for paid holidays will be based on the employee’s scheduled hours of work. Where these hours differ from day to day, the rate of pay will be based on the average of the employee’s daily earnings, exclusive of overtime, for the days worked in the thirteen (13) week period immediately preceding the holiday.

Severe Weather/Storm Closing

Emergencies resulting from, but not limited to, severe weather, environmental conditions, utility disruptions, road conditions, acts of God, acts of terrorism, may lead to a decision to either cancel classes, in which case all of the normal activities of the university continue, or to close the University with the exception of essential services. University policy 7.6 outlines the procedures in more detail.

In instances where the University is closed under this policy, employees will not suffer a loss of compensation from the loss of time incurred. Those who are required to work in order to maintain essential services during any period of closure shall be paid at the rate of time and a half.

Notice of closure will be posted on the Website, and included in the welcome message at the campus’ phone number.

A leave with full compensation and benefits of up to one (1) day per fiscal year may be granted to employees who are absent from work as a result of extreme weather conditions when the university is open. Further leaves of this nature will be without pay, and will be granted at the discretion of the immediate manager.

Leaves

Medical and Dental Appointments

Every attempt should be made to arrange appointments outside of working hours. The university realizes that, in certain situations, it might be impossible to do so. If an employee is unable to make appointments outside of normal working hours, such time is to be deducted from accumulated sick leave credits to the nearest one-half (1/2) hour.

Sick Leave

The university recognizes that employees may need to be absent due to illness, disability or injury and therefore provides sick leave benefits to provide income protection during such absences.

Sick leave means the period of time an employee is unable to work due to illness, disability or injury for which the employee is not receiving Workers’ Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) benefits or any other compensation for loss of earnings.

Employees are also eligible to use their sick leave to a maximum of 50 days per calendar year when prevented from attendance at work in order to attend a child, spouse, parent, brother, or sister who is sick and dependent upon the employee for health care. The employee may be required to verify the basis for the absence by providing supporting documentation. If a physician’s statement is requested, the University will reimburse the employee up to $20 per certificate.

The accumulation of sick leave credits does not confer the right to their unlimited use but is provided as protection to ensure salary continuance in the event of a prolonged absence from work.

Full-time employees are automatically credited with 20 sick days upon hire.

Part-time employees are automatically credited with one-half (½) of the accumulation previously noted upon hire.

Sick leave includes medical and dental appointments.

Sick leave credits will accumulate on the basis of one and one half (1½) days for each month in which work is actually performed {one (1) day per month for part-time}, to a maximum of one hundred and five (105) working days, inclusive of the above automatic accumulations.

"One day" is defined as a period equivalent to a normally scheduled work period. Sick leave will be credited in hours and reported as such.

If an employee incurs a certifiable illness, that would prohibit them from working during a vacation period, the University, with the appropriate medical documentation, may record it as sick leave and reinstate the corresponding vacation credits.

Sick Leave Benefits

Short Term

During the first one hundred and twenty (120) consecutive calendar days of absence due to the employee being unable to perform their job due to illness, disability, injury or recuperation, salary payments will continue as follows:

  • 100% of the regular salary in effect at the time of absence for the period equal to the number of sick credits accumulated at the time of absence
  • 662/3% of the regular salary in effect at the time of absence for the period of absence where no sick credits are available and for absences greater than five (5) consecutive days subject to the completion of a Medical Certificate of Disability acceptable to the University in accordance with the Sick Leave and Disability Management Policy supporting an ongoing condition requiring a long term absence from work.

If an absence is due to the same illness or injury within 30 days of returning from the original absence, it will be classified as a continuation of the same absence and only the balance of the unused portion will apply.

The University will reimburse the employee up to $50 per certificate, or another amount as determined by the university.

Please refer to the Sick Leave and Disability Management Program Policy for further details.

Vacation and sick leave credits will not accumulate during sick leaves of more than 30 days.

Long Term

Should the absence extend beyond one-hundred-and-twenty (120) consecutive days, those employees enrolled in the university's long-term disability benefit plan will apply for benefits under that plan.

If the application for benefits is approved and the employee is receiving payments under the long-term disability plan (LTD), the university will be responsible for normal pension contributions, including the employee portion. Basic life, optional life and accidental death and dismemberment and disability insurance premiums will be waived. Other benefit coverage and premium payments will not change. The above pension and benefits are in effect as long as the individual remains an employee*. LTD benefits continue in accordance with the LTD plan.

Employees not insured under the long-term disability plan may make application for employment insurance sick leave benefits. Employees not in receipt of LTD benefits will be considered to be on an unpaid leave of absence. Benefit and pension continuation will be determined as outlined below under the Leave Without Compensation section.

Vacation and sick leave credits will not accumulate while an employee is on long-term disability leave.

*Employment will normally be terminated after a minimum of 24 months absence and a medical prognosis indicating return to work is not imminent. Employees who continue to be in receipt of LTD benefits past this 24 month period will continue to be eligible to participate in the Extended Health Care plan to a maximum of $30,000 per calendar year, and the Dental Care plan and the university will continue to be responsible for making employer and employee pension contributions.

Leave Without Compensation

The university recognizes that employees may, on occasion, desire, or need, to take a temporary, unpaid leave of absence from their regular duties for various personal reasons.

Leaves may not exceed one year and are subject to written approval from the employee’s manager.

Vacation and sick leave credits will not accumulate during leaves of more than 30 days.

If the leave is for 30 calendar days or fewer, benefit coverage and premium payments will not change. If the leave is for more than 30 calendar days, the employee will be required to make both the employee and the university’s contributions toward the cost of the available benefits that the employee wishes to continue during the leave. The University will continue to make employer contributions to the Pension Plan unless the employee has advised the university that they do not wish to continue to make the employee contributions.

To apply, the employee must submit a written request to their manager at least three months in advance of the starting date of the leave. This request should outline the start date, end date and purpose of the request for a leave. A copy should be submitted to Human Resources.

The employee’s manager should respond in writing within two weeks and specify whether the leave has been granted or denied with a copy to Human Resources. Approval of such a leave is at the discretion of the manager and should take into account various factors, including the merits of the case, whether the position can be adequately filled in your absence and the effect on the department.

If the leave is granted, a forwarding address for correspondence should be relayed to the Manager and Human Resources for future reference. At least four weeks written notice should be given if the employee plans to request an extension, return early or not return at all.

Personal Leave

Personal leave days may be granted in the event of uncontrollable circumstances and for personal commitments that cannot be attended to outside working hours.

Personal leaves of up to three (3) days per fiscal year may be granted without loss of regular pay for continuing and recurring employees. Examples of such circumstances are:

  • illness in the immediate family, or;
  • relocation of a household, or;
  • preparation for and writing exams, or,
  • legal appointments, or,
  • major property damage caused by fire or some other personal disaster, or,
  • additional Bereavement Leave as required, or,
  • religious/spiritual observation.

Personal leave days must be recorded on the bi-weekly absence report and should be approved in advance by the employee’s manager, whenever possible. Requests should include the date, amount of time required, and the reason for the leave.

Bereavement Leave

In the event of a death in an employee’s immediate family, (defined as spouse, common-law spouse, same-sex partner, son, daughter, children of common-law spouse, step-children, ward, brother, sister, parent), the employee will be granted a leave of absence to make funeral arrangements and to attend the funeral. The employees will receive regular pay for the time lost, up to a maximum of five (5) consecutive working days. For a non-immediate family member (defined as mother-in-law, father-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, grandchild, grandmother and grandfather, grandparent of spouse) payment will not exceed three (3) days. A leave of absence of one (1) day with pay may be granted if the employee is unable to attend the funeral of a member of the immediate family because of distance but require the day to make funeral arrangements and/or to attend a local service. If extensive travel is required to attend the funeral of a family member, an additional leave with full compensation and benefits to a maximum of two (2) days may be granted.

Where bereavement leave occurs during an employee’s vacation period, the employee may substitute bereavement leave for the period in question provided that the employee contacts their immediate manager during the vacation period and provides evidence satisfactory to the manager. The employee would then be eligible to schedule the unused portion of their vacation at a later date.

The above is intended as a guideline. Managers may exercise flexibility as they see fit.

Pregnancy/Parental/Adoption Leave

All employees, who are pregnant and who have been employed by the University for at least 13 weeks prior to the estimated date of birth will be entitled to a pregnancy leave for a maximum of seventeen (17) weeks, however, maternity benefits can only be collected either up to 12 weeks before they are expected to give birth or at the week they give birth. Pregnancy leave can start any time during the 17 weeks before the baby is due. Pregnancy leave must be taken as one continuous period.

All employees, who have been employed by the University for at least thirteen (13) weeks prior to the birth of a child or before a child comes into the parent’s custody for the first time, will be entitled to a parental/adoption leave of up to thirty-five (35) weeks or an extended parental benefits maximum of sixty-one (61) weeks.

A birth mother who takes pregnancy leave must begin her parental leave as soon as her pregnancy leave ends. Birth mothers who take pregnancy leave are entitled to take up to 35 weeks of parental leave. All other new parents are entitled to take up to 37 weeks of parental/adoption leave. The leave must begin no later than 52 weeks after the birth of the child or the date the child first came into the employee’s custody, care and control for a standard parental/adoption leave or no later than 78 weeks after the week the child was born or placed for the purpose of adoption.

Employees may decide to take a shorter leave if they wish. However, once an employee has started parental leave, he or she must take it all at one time.

An employee must give the university at least two (2) weeks written notice before beginning a pregnancy and/or parental/adoption leave. After the leave has started, the employee must give written notice at least four (4) weeks before the date any change in plans will occur. This notice should indicate the start date of the leave and the return to work date.

To inquire about eligibility for "pregnancy and or parental/adoption benefits" from the Employment Insurance Program call the nearest Human Resources Development Canada-Employment Insurance Telemessage General Inquiries, or via the website (www.servicecanada.gc.ca).

Benefit Continuation During Pregnancy/Parental/Adoption Leave

During pregnancy and/or parental/adoption leave the University will continue the employee’s benefits coverage, unless the plan is contributory and the employee has elected to discontinue contributions. The University will also continue to make employer contributions to pension plan unless the employee has advised in writing that they do not wish to continue to make their contributions. Human Resources will provide employees with payment options prior to their leave.

Vacation credits and sick leave credit will continue to accrue while an employee is on pregnancy and/or parental/adoption leave.

Supplementary Employment Benefits for Pregnancy and Parental/Adoption Leave

During pregnancy and parental/adoption leaves eligible continuing or recurring employees may be entitled to a supplementary employment benefit. A supplementary employment benefit is an additional payment made by the university to an eligible employee to supplement the pregnancy and parental benefits provided by the government. Eligible employees shall receive the supplementary employment benefits as follows:

Pregnancy Leave

During the period of pregnancy leave, an employee is entitled to 100% of her full Reference Salary for the first two (2) weeks and the amount equal to the difference between the Employment Insurance benefits received and 95% of her full reference salary for a maximum of fifteen (15) additional weeks.

Parental/Adoption Leave

During the period of parental/adoption leave, employees shall be entitled to the supplementary benefit as follows:

  • Employees who have received supplementary benefits for pregnancy leave and who have been employed by the University for at least 12 months immediately preceding the birth of a child shall receive an amount equal to the difference between the Employment Insurance benefits received and 95% of his/her reference salary for up to 12 weeks.
  • Employees who have not received supplementary benefits for a pregnancy leave will be eligible to receive 100% of his/her full reference salary for the first 2 weeks of parental/adoption leave and an amount equal to the difference between the Employment Insurance benefits received and 95% of his/her reference salary for the next 10 weeks of parental/adoption leave.
  • During periods of the extended parental leave for up to 18 months provides a reduced amount of Employment Insurance Benefits (a maximum Employment Insurance Benefit rate of 33% spread over the extended leave period as opposed to the standard parental leave of the maximum Employment Insurance Benefit rate of 55% of average weekly earnings). Employees will be entitled to a supplementary benefit as identified above. The University will assume an employee will be receiving the maximum EI benefit amount period of 12 months regardless of the length of parental leave the employee elects to take.

Payment of Supplementary Benefits

To receive the supplementary benefit, eligible employees must supply the University with proof of application to the Canada Employment Insurance Commission (CEIC). The Payment of the benefit shall be as follows:

  • The university will estimate the payment amount of the CEIC and provide a supplementary payment to the employee on the usual salary payment schedule. This supplementary payment will be regarded as an advance.
  • Upon receipt of their CEIC statement, the employee shall provide Human Resources with a copy of this statement.
  • The subsequent payments to the employee shall be adjusted, up or down, to reflect the actual supplementary benefit payable.

Failure to provide Human Resources with the CEIC statement within a reasonable timeframe after the commencement of the leave and the receipt of the CEIC statement may result in the delay or cessation of the supplementary benefit payment.

An employee who fails to return to work for a minimum period of six (6) months or on a reduced workload for an equal number of hours, pro-rated over a longer period of time not to exceed twelve (12) months following the expiration of the pregnancy and/or parental/adoption Leave, may be required to repay the supplementary benefit they have received, except when the employee has provided satisfactory evidence of illness of the employee or child or when the employee is laid off.

Post-Natal Leave

At the request of a parent who does not take pregnancy leave, the University will grant up to five (5) days of paid leave within four (4) weeks of the delivery date, provided that the employee has been employed by the University for at least thirteen (13) weeks immediately preceding the day of delivery. This request must be given to the employee’s manager at least two (2) weeks prior to the commencement of the leave.

Extended Parental Leave

An Extended Parental Leave without compensation, up to a maximum of fifty-two (52) weeks, may be given to an Employee who has been employed by the University for at least fourteen (14) months immediately preceding the commencement of a Parental Leave. Extended Leave will commence immediately upon the completion of a Parental Leave. The employee will give a written request to their immediate manager at least three (3) months prior to the commencement of the Extended Parental Leave.

During an Extended Parental Leave the employee will be required to make both the employee and the University contributions toward the cost of the available benefits that the employee wishes to continue and will advise the University in writing of their intentions to do so. The University will continue to make employer contributions to the Pension Plan unless the employee has advised the University in writing that they do not wish to continue to make the employee contributions.

Vacation and sick leave credits will not accumulate during an extended parental leave.

Court Duty Leave

A leave of absence will be granted to employees who are called for jury duty or subpoenaed as a witness in a court proceeding. The university will pay the difference between normal earnings and the payment received for jury service or duty as a court witness, excluding payment for travel, meals, or other expenses. Such payment by the university is contingent on satisfactory proof of attendance in court.

Military Leave

An employee is entitled to a leave of absence without compensation if the employee is a reservist and will not be performing the duties of their position:

  • the employee is deployed to a Canadian forces operation outside Canada; or
  • the employee is deployed to a Canadian forces operation inside Canada that is or will be providing assistance in dealing with an emergency or with its aftermath; or
  • on military training for a maximum of two (2) weeks training per year.

Upon return to work, an employee who is a reservist and who was deployed to a Canadian Forces operation outside the country or to an operation inside Canada that provided assistance in dealing with an emergency, will resume their former position, provided that it still exists, with the full salary and benefits. If their former position no longer exists, Position Redundancy will apply.

Employees must provide notice in writing to their immediate manager before beginning and ending a Military Reservist Leave.

For the first 30 calendar days of the leave, benefits coverage and premium payments by the employee and the university will not change. After the first 30 days, the University will no longer contribute towards university benefits, but will permit and facilitate continuance of the available coverage if desired and the employee will pay the applicable premiums.

Citizenship Leave

An employee becoming a Canadian citizen will be entitled to a full day with no loss of compensation and benefits in order to attend the citizenship proceedings.

Election Leave

In federal elections, employees are entitled to a period of four consecutive hours for the purpose of voting during polling hours on election day. In provincial and municipal elections, the entitlement is three consecutive hours.

Compassionate Leave

Employees who care for terminally ill family members under the terms of the Employment Insurance Act and apply and are approved for EI benefits, are eligible for a supplementary employment benefit as follows:

  • 100% of reference salary for two weeks, and
  • For up to an additional six weeks, an amount equal to the difference between the Employment Insurance benefits received and 95% of the employee’s reference salary.

To receive this supplementary benefit, the University must be supplied with proof of application to the Employment Insurance Commission.

During a Compassionate Leave the University will continue the employee’s benefits coverage, unless the plan is contributory and the employee has elected to discontinue contributions. The University will also continue to make employer contributions to pension plan unless the employee has advised in writing that they do not wish to continue to make their contributions. Human Resources will provide employees with payment options prior to their leave.

Professional Leave/Education Advancement

A professional leave may be granted for either enhancement of experience and/or knowledge, or acquisition of new skills.

An education advancement leave may be granted for the completion of either a college or university education.

Employee’s having five (5) or more years of service with the University are eligible to apply for a professional development leave or education advancement leave for a period not to exceed six months or two years, respectively. Throughout this approved leave period, the employee will receive a percentage of their salary which will depend on the type of leave granted by the university.

A request, in writing, to their immediate manager is required for a professional development or education advancement leave. The request must set out the objectives for the leave, the start date, the proposed length of absence, and the expected benefits to both the employee and the university. Application must be made three (3) months prior to the commencement of the leave.

You will be notified of the granting, denial or deferral of a professional leave or education advancement leave within two (2) months of making the application.

Throughout the leave period, you will receive a percentage of your salary, as outlined below. This payment will be made on the regular pay cycle.

  • for Professional Development Leaves which will directly enhance your performance or competence in your existing position, as outlined in the proposal submitted, you will receive seventy-five percent of your reference salary.
  • for Education Advancement Leaves which will provide you a formal post-secondary education opportunity and will lead to a degree or diploma, you will receive twenty-five percent of your reference salary during the approved leave.

For the first 30 calendar days, the benefit coverage and premium payments by the University and the employee will not change. After the first 30 calendar days, the employee will be required to make both the employee and the university’s contributions toward the cost of the available benefits that the employee wishes to continue during the leave. The University will continue to make employer contributions to the Pension Plan unless the employee has advised the University that they do not wish to continue to make the employee contributions.

While on leave, benefit levels will be based on the employee’s reference salary in the year prior to the leave. The continuation and coverage under the Long Term Disability Plan shall be based on the employee’s actual salary.

Vacation accrual and sick leave credits will not accrue during the leave period.

An employee who wishes to return from their leave prior to the original date of return will notify their manager in writing at least four (4) weeks in advance, giving that revised date of return.

Upon completion of the leave, employees must return to their position for a minimum of one year or, failing this, they will be required to reimburse the University for any salary received during the leave.

Upon return to work from leave, you will resume your former position, provided that it still exists, with full salary and benefits. If the position no longer exists, the employee will follow the position redundancy process.

Holidays and Vacation Entitlement

Paid Holidays

The university recognizes the following as paid holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • Family Day
  • Good Friday
  • Victoria Day
  • Canada Day
  • Civic Holiday
  • Labour Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day
  • Boxing Day
  • New Year's Eve Day
Public holiday pay shall be in accordance with ESA.

Floating Days

Each year there will also be three floating days which will be designated by the university annually and which normally fall within the holiday break.

Employees will not normally be required to work on a designated floating day. Employees who are required to work on a floating day will be compensated at a rate of 1.5 times their salary rate for hours worked.

Vacation Entitlement

An employee’s vacation year begins with the first day of service with the University without a break in service. Entitlement is outlined below. Both employees and their manager should make every attempt to ensure that all vacation days are taken within the appropriate vacation year. The positive effects of being refreshed and rested can reduce the possible tension and stress that can arise from extended periods of hard work with no break.

The vacation year begins on the employee’s start date and is accumulated monthly as per below, depending on the type of position. For purposes of vacation entitlement, years of service are calculated from the date of commencement of uninterrupted employment with the university.

Annual vacation entitlement will be prorated if the employee works less than 35 hours per week and where periods of absence occur for which vacation credit does not accrue. If an employee leaves Laurier and returns to full-time employment within one year of the date of termination, they will be credited with previous service for purposes of vacation entitlement, commencing with the second vacation year following re-employment.

The university will avoid, through careful planning of work schedules, the necessity for employees to work overtime. However, it is understood that occasions may arise that require a reasonable amount of overtime for the efficient operation of the University. Management will endeavour to provide employees with reasonable notice of the need to work overtime. While overtime is voluntary, employees are expected to cooperate.

Vacation Entitlement Based on Years of Service
Years of Service Entitlement
Less than one year 1.8 days for each month of service, to a maximum of 22 days
One year to fewer than six years 22 days
Six years to fewer than 15 years 25 days
15 years to fewer than 25 years 27 days
25 years and more 30 days

Vacation Accrual While on Leave

Vacation credits will accrue while an employee is on maternity, parental leave (excludes extended parental leave), sick leave of less than 30 calendar days and any approved leave of absence of less than 30 calendar days in duration.

Vacation Prior to Accrual

Vacation may be taken prior to accrual, up to your annual entitlement, with approval of your manager within the first year of employment. When an employee’s active employment ceases, they will be required to reimburse any monies owing as a result of this.

Vacation Carryover

The vacation year for carryover purposes is based on the employee’s anniversary date.

Vacation Carryover Based on Years of Completed Service
Years of Completed Service Allowable Carryover
One 12 days
Five 15 days
14 20 days
24 25 days

For part-time employees, vacation days will be pro-rated.

Scheduling of Vacation

Each Manager is responsible for coordinating the vacation time for their respective departments. If there are any conflicts that cannot be resolved, length of service will be the determining factor.

Pay in Lieu of Vacation

It is not the practice of the university to pay in lieu of taking vacation time, except in the case of discontinuing employees (see below).

Legal Requirements

The Employment Standards Act requires that the employer maintain a record of vacation earned and taken by employees. The manager who approves vacation scheduling is responsible for keeping accurate records of their employee’s entitlement and vacation taken.

Discontinuing and Retiring Employees

If an employee discontinues employment with the university, the university will pay the cash equivalent for unused vacation accrual at time of termination. No vacation may be taken after notice of resignation has been given, unless approved by the manager.

Employees are expected to use all accrued vacation prior to the retirement date.

Benefits

For full time employees in continuing appointments, or limited term appointments greater than 12 months in duration, the university provides the following benefit plan:

  • Extended Health Care Plan
  • Dental Care Plan
  • Basic Group Life Insurance Plan
  • Long-Term Disability Plan (employee paid premiums)*
  • Optional Group Life Insurance Plan (employee paid premiums)*
  • Optional Accidental Death, and Dismemberment(employee paid premiums)*
  • Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP)

*Premiums for these options are subject to change by the carrier.

Employees hired on a limited term appointment, less than 12 months in duration, are eligible to receive:

  • Extended Health Care Plan
  • Dental Care Plan
  • Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

Part-time employees scheduled to work between 910 and 1249 hours in a year will receive full coverage (employer paid premium) for their choice of either Extended Health Care or Dental Care, and have the option of purchasing membership in the other plan.

Employees scheduled to work fewer than 910 hours per year will receive an amount equal to four percent (4%) of their salary in lieu of benefits.

A comprehensive description of these plans and associated cost-sharing arrangements can be viewed in the staff benefits booklet found on the university intranet (Connect), Working at Laurier/ Benefits and Employee Well-Being. If employees have questions concerning claims or if they need assistance, they should contact the Compensation & Benefits Analyst at x4504 or email hr@wlu.ca.

Tuition Waiver Program

Detailed information on the Tuition Waiver Program can be found Connect, Working at Laurier/ Benefits and Employee Well-Being.

In the interest of encouraging employees to participate in personal and professional development, the university provides a tuition waiver for those who wish to upgrade their academic qualifications by attending credit courses at Wilfrid Laurier University main campus, Brantford campus, Kitchener campus or Martin Luther University College. Courses taken that are for interest and are not work related are considered a taxable benefit.

Full-time employees with continuing status who have successfully completed their probation period, or an employee who has retired from the University, are eligible to receive a one-hundred percent (100%) waiver of the domestic academic tuition fees (or equivalent) for undergraduate and graduate courses taken at Wilfrid Laurier University and at Martin Luther University College, with the exception of the MBA program offered at the Toronto campus, and any executive style graduate degree program. This waiver is restricted to three (3) full courses or six (6) half courses in each twelve (12) month period, commencing May 1 each year. Employees will be responsible for the cost of private instruction, course material, books, registration and examination fees, exemption fees, and other incidental fees.

Full-time employees with a Limited-Term appointment of one (1) year or more, with an anticipated end date that is after the final add date for the applicable academic term in which the appointment ends, and who have completed their probationary period, are eligible to receive a one-hundred percent (100%) waiver of the domestic academic tuition fees (or equivalent) for undergraduate and graduate courses taken at Wilfrid Laurier University and at Martin Luther University College, with the exception of the MBA program offered at the Toronto campus, and any executive style graduate degree program. This waiver is restricted to three (3) full courses or six (6) half courses in each twelve (12) month period, commencing May 1 each year. Members will be responsible for the cost of private instruction, course material, books, registration and examination fees, exemption fees, and other incidental fees.

Should the University end the employee’s appointment prior to the anticipated end date, and the employee has registered for courses in the academic term in which the appointment ends, the employee shall be eligible for the tuition waiver.

Part-time employees with a continuing status who have regularly scheduled work hours total 910 -1249 per year, and who have completed their probationary period, will receive a 50% reduction of domestic academic tuition fees, with the same provisions as described above. Also, during any particular fiscal year employees are eligible to receive a one hundred percent (100%) waiver of the academic tuition fees for one course offered in the evening for which they register as a part-time student.

Part-time employees who have a Limited-Term appointment of one (1) year or more, with an anticipated end date that is after the final add date for the applicable academic term in which the appointment ends, and whose regularly scheduled work hours total 910-1249 per year are eligible to receive a fifty percent (50%) waiver of the domestic academic tuition fees (or equivalent). In addition, for this group, the University will provide the following option, which may be selected at the discretion of the employee in any particular fiscal year during the term of this contract. Under this option, the employee would be eligible to receive a one hundred percent (100%) waiver of the academic tuition fees for any undergraduate course, offered in the evening for which they register as a part-time student.

Should the university end the employee’s appointment prior to the anticipated end date, and the employee has registered for courses in the academic term in which the appointment ends, the employee shall be eligible for the tuition waiver.

Eligibility is determined at the beginning of the academic term, and no partial waivers will be made. Employees will be responsible for all non-tuition fees, including registration and examination fees, incidental and ancillary fees, and for any course materials.

The university will reimburse employees for 100% of the applicable tuition costs for the successful completion of a work-related course at a college or university other than WLU, when the course is not available at WLU and where the course has been recommended by the employee’s Manager. Employees will be responsible for the cost of private instruction, course materials, books, exemption fees and other incidental fees.

Generally, courses will be taken outside of normal working hours. However, with the approval of an employee’s manager, work-related courses may be taken during regular working hours, provided that comparable time is made up within a reasonable period.

Courses taken at any Laurier campus are subject to the usual registration and enrolment procedures. Employees must indicate that they are employees of the University on all forms. The Business Office will automatically waive the academic tuition fees.

If an employee retires or is currently receiving Long Term Disability Benefits, they continue to be entitled to this tuition benefit as outlined above.

Spousal/Dependent Tuition Benefits

An eligible full-time employee’s dependent children or spouse are eligible to receive 100% waiver of domestic tuition fees for undergraduate and graduate courses offered at Wilfrid Laurier University main campus, Brantford campus, Kitchener campus or Martin Luther University College. Tuition fee waivers for international students shall be limited to the value of the domestic fees for the equivalent program.

An eligible part-time employee’s dependent children or spouse (as defined above) are eligible to receive a 50% waiver of the domestic tuition fees for up to 4 half credit undergraduate courses in each year starting May 1 for courses offered at the Wilfrid Laurier Main campus, Brantford campus, Kitchener, campus or Martin Luther University College. 

Eligibility is determined at the beginning of the academic term, and no partial waivers will be made. Dependent children and spouses must meet the admission requirements of the programs.

Non-tuition fees, including registration and examination fees, incidental and ancillary fees, and fees for course materials, are not included in the benefit. Internship and Co-operative Education fees are waived.

If an employee retires, passes away or is currently receiving Long Term Disability Benefits, their spouse and dependent children shall also be entitled to this tuition benefit. This is also a taxable benefit.

Eligibility is determined at the beginning of the academic term, and no partial waivers will be made. Dependent children and spouses must meet the admission requirements of the programs.

Employees must complete a Spouse/Dependent Application for Tuition Waiver form and return it to Human Resources in order to be eligible for this benefit.

Athletic Membership 

Employees have access to athletic facilities provided locally at a rate to be determined annually by the University. Employees also have the right to use the university’s athletic facilities at the Waterloo campus upon payment of an annual fee determined annually by the University. These two arrangements are exclusive of each other and payment for one will not be applicable for both facilities. Both fees are subject to change. For more information please visit the Athletics and Recreation web page.

Parking Fee

Parking lots are available to employees upon payment of the applicable parking fee plus taxes. Parking permits may be used on an occasional basis at other campuses for meetings, education, seminars, or conferences.

The parking fee is subject to change and will be determined annually by the university. For more information please visit the University intranet (Connect), Parking & Transportation.

Parking permits must be returned to the Parking Office prior to leave or termination of employment.

Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP)

The EFAP is a confidential counselling service for eligible Wilfrid Laurier University employees and families. It is a free, voluntary and high quality service provided by the Homewood Health Inc.

To arrange a confidential appointment at Homewood Health EFAP, call anytime 24/7/365

  • Toll-free (English): 1.800.663.1142
  • Toll-free (French): 1.866.398.9505
  • TTY: 1.888.384.1152
  • International (call collect): 604.689.1717

Visit the website at homeweb.ca.

For more information please visit the university intranet (Connect), Working at Laurier/Benefits and Employee Well-Being.

Financial Assistance For Computer/Peripherals Purchase 

The university will provide financial assistance in the form of a loan for any computer and/or computer peripherals purchase, and software, available at the University’s Bookstore, within the price range of $500 - $5000.

Financial assistance will be limited to one purchase per employee every twenty-four (24) months while employed at the university.

Employees must purchase the computer and/or computer peripherals through the university’s Bookstore and repay the university in equal, low interest, instalments over not more than a twenty-four (24) month period. The University will apply an interest rate no greater than the prescribed interest rate as defined by the Canada Revenue Agency. Employees will be required to sign a waiver permitting the university to deduct the remaining balance from their last pay, inclusive of vacation pay, upon termination.

Computers and/or computer peripherals purchased through this option will become the property of the employee, and as a direct owner of the equipment the employee will be responsible for its maintenance, repair, and upkeep.

For further information on Financial Assistance for Computer / Peripherals Purchase, please see the university intranet (Connect), Working at Laurier/Benefits and Employee Well-Being.

Pension

The Plan is a Money purchase (also referred to as Defined Contribution) plan with a Minimum Guaranteed Pension level (also referred to as a Defined Benefit). This two-part or “hybrid” plan design provides you with a better benefit than a more traditional plan, because it enables you to reap the rewards of the plan’s investment performance, while having the security of a minimum guaranteed benefit. Your Money Purchase plan is an individual savings account into which your contributions, together with the matching contributions made by the University during the period of your employment with the university, have been deposited. These funds are invested on your behalf and your account is credited with the interest income on an annual basis.

Full-time employees are eligible to become Members of the Wilfrid Laurier University Plan on the first day of the month coincident with or following their first day of employment with the University.

Part-time employees are eligible to become Members of the Wilfrid Laurier University Plan following two consecutive calendar years of continuous employment in which they have either earnings greater than 35% of the Canada Pension Plan Yearly Maximum Pensionable Earning, or have worked 700 hours of work in each of the two years. Enrollment must begin on the first of a month.

Employees who are Members of the pension plan are required to contribute, by regular payroll deduction, an amount equal to 8% of, and 10% of the employee’s Reference Salary above the Year’s Maximum Pensionable Earning (YMPE). The University will contribute an amount equal to 7% of the employee’s Reference Salary.

For further information on the Laurier Pension Plan, please refer to Connect, Working at Laurier/ Pension and Retirement Services.

Compensation Program

Consistent with the university’s commitment to “pay for performance” and to provide a comprehensive compensation plan for employees, this program provides employees the opportunity to receive regular salary adjustments to reflect economic conditions as well as levels of achievement and competence.

It is the university’s goal to pay comparable salaries for comparable positions throughout the university campus. The Confidential Professional Administrative Group compensation system will maintain internal equity with other jobs at the University through a consistent application of the job evaluation plan and benchmarking with other comparable jobs at the university. Please refer to Connect, Working at Laurier/Employee Groups and Resources for more detailed information on the compensation program.

Compensation for the Confidential Professional Administrative Group

Confidential Professional Administrative Group employees are paid an annual salary, on a biweekly basis. The salaries are based on the Non-union Professional/Clerical and Confidential Staff Salary Grid which consists of nine salary bands ranging from EX-A to EX-I. Each salary band has an associated salary range. Jobs are assigned to a band based on the number points achieved when the Hay Evaluation Method is applied to the information supplied in the job description.

Once an employee is hired into a new position and placed at the appropriate point in the salary range, he/she will continue to move through the range through annual merit increases, based on the successful achievement of performance goals.

The salary grid may increase annually through annual economic (across-the-board) adjustments each July 1 as outlined in the Confidential Professional Administrative Group Compensation Policy.

Salary grids will be posted annually on the Human Resources web page or available in alternative formats from Human Resources.

Travel Expenses

The reimbursement for approved travel, including mileage and per diem will be the current rate approved by the university. Please refer to the university Travel Policy for current rates.

Position Redundancy

The decision to eliminate a position or to reduce staff is one requiring careful consideration and is only reached after other alternatives have been fully investigated. As such the application of this policy is done in a consultative manner involving the management accountable for the decision and the Human Resources Department.

Prior to the announcement of position redundancy the director and appropriate vice-president will consult with Human Resources for purposes of administering this policy.

The purpose of consultation with Human Resources is to determine the full extent and impact of the decision identify options and ensure compliance with the appropriate legislation and practice.

Position Redundancy Process

  1. Any staff person in a continuing position who is declared redundant will be considered for available positions. If there is a similar position for which they are qualified and have demonstrated the skills and competencies to perform the job, the person will be placed in this position without a search.
  2. If no such placement is possible, a staff person in a position declared redundant will receive written notice of termination outlining notice entitlement and severance pay entitlement (the notice and severance period will be determined in consultation with human resources and will be at least that of the Employment Standards Act).
  3. Any staff person who receives written notice of termination will be considered an internal employee for the duration of their notice period. At the discretion of the Manager, staff may or may not be required to work during the notice period.

Termination

Resignation

Should the employee decide to terminate his/her employment at the university, a letter of resignation must be submitted to the employee’s immediate manager. The letter of resignation should specify the effective date of resignation and offer an appropriate notice period. It is recommended that a minimum of two (2) weeks is generally appropriate.

When an employee voluntarily leaves the University, they will be invited to participate in an exit interview with their Human Resources representative. The purpose of this interview is to give the employee an opportunity to provide honest and open feedback about their experience at the university and for the university to learn and consider any recommendations they may have to make Laurier a better community.

Dismissal

The university has the right to terminate employment in accordance with university policies and relevant employment standards and human rights legislation. The Human Resources Department must be consulted in all cases of discipline or potential dismissal.
Both the employee and the university have the right to terminate the employment relationship. This can include resignation, termination initiated by the university for cause, redundancy, or layoff.

Retirement

The Wilfrid Laurier University Pension Plan’s normal retirement date is the first day of the month coincident with or next following an employee’s 65th birthday. In addition to normal retirement, the University's pension plan provides a number of retirement options. For more detailed information regarding retirement benefits, please refer Connect, Working at Laurier/Benefits and Employee Well-Being.

Normal Retirement

The Normal Retirement Date for an employee of the WLU Pension Plan will be the first day of the month coincident with or next following the employee’s sixty-fifth (65th) birthday. An employee may opt to postpone retirement and continue working past the Normal Retirement Date.

Pension benefits are paid monthly commencing on the first of the month following retirement.

Postponed Retirement Date

An employee may postpone retirement after attaining the Normal Retirement Date.

Employees who choose to continue employment beyond the Normal Retirement Date will be required to commence receiving pension payments no later than the end of the calendar year in which the employee attains age 71 or such later date as may be permitted under the Income Tax Act at which time both employee and the University will cease contributions to the WLU Pension Plan and the period of continued service will not be counted as pensionable service for the calculation of pension benefits. While working beyond the Normal Retirement Date the employee may continue to make contributions to the WLU Pension Plan and, by so doing, for the purposes of pension benefit calculations receive matching University contributions and additional pensionable service for the period worked.

An employee who has postponed retirement, and who has elected to continue to make contributions during the postponed period, will have pension benefits calculated in the same manner as at normal retirement.

Employees are advised to provide as much written notice as possible of their intention to retire to allow for administrative processing and orderly planning. The recommended time frame is minimum of three (3) months prior to the proposed retirement date.

Early Retirement

Employees may choose to retire on the first day of any month after reaching age 55.

Retirement Benefits

Employees who have completed at least five years of consecutive, full time service at the University immediately prior to retirement (employees who are hired after July 1, 2014, must have completed at least 10 years of consecutive, full time service) will be able to participate in the following plans based on the terms and condition specified in the plans:

  • the Extended Health Care Plan in effect at the date of retirement to a maximum of $30,000 per year;
  • The Dental Care Plan in effect at the date of retirement

Employees who are eligible for post-retirement benefits and who retire early and have alternate benefits through employment elsewhere, the alternate plan will be the first payer for all claims and the University shall serve as the second payer.

University Governance

Board of Governors and Senate

The Board of Governors and Senate have rights, powers, and responsibilities as established by statute and by-law, except as such rights, powers, and responsibilities may have been specifically abridged, delegated, or modified by the Certification Order. The Board will exercise those rights, powers, and responsibilities in a manner which is fair, reasonable, and consistent with the provisions of this Agreement.

Collegiality

The University acknowledges the rights and responsibilities of employees to participate in the formulation and/or recommendation of policies and procedures within the University through duly constituted collegial bodies and committees.

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