Re: what was that?

Subject: Re: what was that?
From: Rob Stone (
Date: Wed Aug 17 2005 - 14:55:44 EDT

I have to say I am with Linda on this. Canadians rightly have a great deal
to be proud of re employment practices and the strength of the unions
through every sphere of employment. Not everyone has this. But then again
not everyone has had to put up with governments who are willing to use taxes
to break up unions. We all know rights against employment assymetries of all
kinds (not just gender specific ones) are not only won, they have to be
defended over time, too. And branding such vigilance anachronistic, (as
elsewhere in this stream), isn't a great help.


> From: Kevin Austin <>
> Reply-To: <>
> Date: Tue, 16 Aug 2005 19:28:33 -0400
> To: <>
> Cc: <>
> Subject: Re: what was that?
> Since it has come up ... but I can only speak from one point of view,
> that of my experience.
> Concordia University fulltime faculty have had a Collective Agreement
> for about 20 years. If the college / university is not organized as /
> with a labor collective, then much of the following may have no
> meaning. (Academics have been loathe to join 'unions' for fear of
> losing their individual freedoms. Doe anyone know the percentage of
> colleges / universities in the USA, Australia, UK, Europe and Canada
> which are unionized?) Without strong collective agreement bargaining
> powers, much else about the system is 'off'.
> I sit on the highest independent hiring overview committee in the
> University and have had the opportunity to review the hiring
> processes of more than 150+ fulltime faculty in a fulltime base of
> 900+.
> Every department has a hiring protocol and procedure document which
> is University approved to address the issue of gender imbalance in
> the University, department by department. These documents fill 2 full
> drawers in a filing cabinet.
> The approved procedures are followed assiduously and double and
> triple-checked at the the of the Department and Faculty, and twice at
> the University level. About 1 file in 10 or 15 gets returned for
> clarification regarding procedure or possible irregularity. In two
> years, I have seen only one departmental recommendation rejected.
> I would contend that at Concordia University, there is no specific or
> systemic gender prejudice. People are not hired on the basis of color
> or gender. They hired through a rigorous process of posting, dossier
> evaluation (by an elected sub-committee), short-listing, interviews,
> reasoned reports and recommendations, which have to approved at four
> more levels of the University.
> The statement about implied systemic and individual bias and
> prejudicial hiring based upon race and gender needs to be fully
> supported in my view, not by anecdotal evidence, but by demonstrating
> how the hiring procedure(s) have been poorly implemented or abused.
> Within many Collective Agreements, it is considered normal that
> decisions can be contested, but they can be contested on 'procedural'
> grounds, not on the basis of the decision. A person may not like the
> outcome, but if it is arrived at following the prescribed (and
> proscribed) procedures, it cannot be (easily) contested.
> Best
> Kevin
> PS Just off-the-record, Concordia's fulltime faculty hiring record
> for the past 2 years has been about 70% female, 70% non-european in
> origin.
> At 14:05 -0700 2005/08/16, James Phelps wrote:
>> --- Linda Seltzer <> wrote:
>>> So I do take seriously the matter of white males with
>>> less talent, ability and education getting all of those plum
>>> academic jobs with full benefits while women are
>>> "free-lancers."
>> It might prove at least entertaining reading someone's attempt to
>> substantiate the "less talent, ability" bit ... not so sure about
>> the "less education" either. The "male" and "white" features might
>> be easier. :>)
>> -Jim Phelps
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