I am running for the position of University of Toronto Faculty Association (UTFA) President and I am seeking your support. The University of Toronto is one of the world’s preeminent institutions of higher learning, and its strength depends to a large degree on respect for, and investment in, the University’s faculty and librarians. UTFA is the only independent advocate for faculty and librarians at the University of Toronto.
Currently, I am UTFA’s Vice-President, Salary, Benefits, Pensions, and Workload (SBPW) and our Chief Negotiator on matters of compensation, Workload Policy (WLPP), Merit Pay (PTR), and other key policy areas (see below). Previously I served for three years as UTFA’s Vice-President, Grievances, in addition to chairing the Equity and Teaching Stream committees. I have led teams that bargained significant improvements for the membership (and the University community as a whole), gained extensive knowledge of University policy and practice, and demonstrated a decade-long commitment to principled advocacy on behalf of faculty and librarians in all streams (including retirees and part-time members). Learn more at www.tereziazoric.org
Vision. Our members’ informed and active support is the single most important means of advancing our collective interests. We need broader participation. UTFA must continue to intensify its efforts at outreach, equity, and engagement. As your President, I would encourage more town halls, member surveys, focus groups, one-on-one conversations, and visits to departmental meetings.
Now leading an historic UTFA grievance on salary discrimination (Association grievance) on behalf of faculty and librarians in equity-seeking groups, drawing on insights from three years of intensive, mixed- methods research, and numerous in-person small focus groups my team and I conducted with members. Thus far this initiative has resulted in a remedial 1.3% salary increase for women in the tenure stream (UTFA has filed a grievance to challenge this low figure) and a 3.9% salary increase for female-identified librarians. We also achieved regular audits of Librarians’ salaries, as well as the establishment of a Joint Administration- Association Working Group to identify and address the impact of systemic biases on librarian compensation.
Led on negotiating comprehensive improvements to UTFA members’ health and safety protections in the context of a complex Asbestos Group Grievance, including explicit guarantees that faculty and librarians can report concerns about their workspace, that those concerns will be assessed promptly, and that the findings will be shared with the member; that the Administration will retain external asbestos consultants to provide a written assessment of the design of the most high-risk asbestos abatement projects; that UTFA can appoint its members onto Joint Health and Safety Committees (JHSC); and the establishment of a joint University-wide JHSC with UTFA to “monitor, assist and provide direction” to the University’s other JHSCs.
Served on numerous UTFA SBPW Bargaining Teams (2008-2011, 2014-2015 (St. Mike’s), 2017-2018, 2018- 2020), as well as the UPP bargaining and education/outreach teams (visiting several departments) that secured our defined benefit pension plan and a supplementary pension (the SAP); the 2014-2016 Special Joint Advisory Committee (SJAC) negotiations that secured the rank of Full Professor for the teaching stream; and the ongoing Sexual Violence Policy Letter of Understanding negotiations (Lead negotiator).
Goals and Priorities
- Work closely with UTFA Council and Executive to democratize UTFA’s outreach and internal workings.
- Affirm academic freedom and responsibility and collegial governance as core values of the University.
- Continue to press for “top of market” compensation that matches the unparalleled professional expectations UTFA faculty and librarians face.
- Improve mental health benefits/supports for UTFA members; protect equal health benefits for retirees.
- Negotiate greater transparency and fairness in the allocation of PTR. Lead Association grievance on misuses of Student ‘Evaluations’ of Teaching (SETs). Expand Workload policy (WLPP) protections for precarious members, e.g., CLTAs and part-timers.
- Continue to grieve salary discrimination based on gender, racialization, Indigeneity, LGBTQ2S, and/or disability; eradicate the root causes of significant, persistent, pervasive, and systemic pay gaps.
- Work with UTFA members and the broader University community to address our responsibilities with respect to the climate crisis.
Academic position. I am an Associate Professor, Teaching Stream, in OISE’s department of Social Justice Education. I have held an academic appointment at the University since 2004. My teaching and scholarship focus on poverty and schooling, anti-discrimination education, teacher activism, and education for environmental justice.