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Precarious worker at an Alberta University

by Sessional Faculty,

Dear committee,

I have been a sessional instructor at MacEwan University since 2006. It's precarious work. Although over 50% of instructors at MacEwan are sessional faculty, we are not represented by our FA, which is now a union, but still doe not represent sessional faculty as equal members.  Our employer, the University, continues to create new, high-paid administrative positions, and puts up new buildings, and at the same time reduces our teaching hours and pay. Although many sessional instructors have been teaching at MacEwan for many years and are highly qualified for tenure-track positions that open up here and there, the University made it clear that they will not hire "their own". The continuous exploitation of our hard work is made worse by cuts in pay, cuts in teaching hours, benefits for just a few, no respect for seniority (the instructors with the highest qualifications and the most teaching experience are facing massive cuts starting this September), no pension, no guarantee to get a contract until shortly before the term (and even at that point courses may be cut), in other word: there's no respect and no appreciation. Our working conditions are deplorable. And it looks to me that they're getting worse.

Precarious work to survive. It's not a choice. It's the sad reality of so many highly qualified academics who have excellent teaching records and are responsible for the education of most post-secondary students.Young people who are the future Canada's. And nobody cares about us. you can barely imagine the anger, frustration and fear we're living with.

Thank you,

Daniela Gatto

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