UPP Consultation – First session

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The new University Pension Plan (UPP) will officially begin on July 1, 2021. The UPP pension model encourages member participation, both through direct consultation with the Board of Trustees (BoT) and through member-appointed representation on both the Joint Sponsors and the BoT.

The investment practices of the UPP are determined, in large part, by the Statement of Investment Policies and Procedures (SIPP). The content of that important document is currently being shaped by the plan’s Board of Trustees in consultation with plan members.

What used to be called “ethical” investing is now referred to as ESG or Responsible Investing (RI). ESG refers to environmental, social, and governance factors in investing policies.

UTFA has heard most often from members who are concerned about the intersection between the climate crisis and investing. These members would like to see the principles and goals of the Paris Agreement embedded in the SIPP.

UTFA members who support efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), including carbon dioxide and methane, might consider advocating for the following proposals:

1. An investment screen on new oil, gas, and coal-related finance and investment, comparable to those already in place for tobacco and weapons.          

2. A clear and measurable timeline for eliminating all direct and indirect investment across all asset classes in companies involved in the extraction, processing, refining, or transportation of fossil fuel investments from the portfolio.

3. A timeline for seeking the long-term decarbonization of all other held assets, with the goal of achieving a zero-emissions carbon portfolio. 

4.Clear and measurable goals for increasing the percentage of the portfolio that is invested in profitable climate solutions (i.e., renewable energy assets).


Members might also have strong views about child labour practices, Indigenous rights, diversity and inclusion in employment, diversity and inclusion in board representation, investment in terrorist or repressive regimes, sustainable agriculture, tobacco and gaming, investment in prisons, and many other topics the UPP might consider in formulating a SIPP.

No matter what members’ concerns are, transparency in investing must be a central value in our new pension plan.

If you are someone who cares about responsible investing, please consider participating in the following ways:

  1. Submit your opinion on ethical investing (ESG factors), or on any other aspect of pension investing, to the UPP through the member website. Human Resources & Equity emailed the link to employed members on April 28, 2021. Retired members will receive information on these sessions through a newsletter.

  2. Attend the university listening sessions that the UPP has organized. Please contact faculty@utfa.org for the password to register for both sessions.
  • May 12 from 10 a.m. to noon.
  • May 27 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Learn more about these sessions here: https://myupp.ca


UTFA Pension Committee

Date and time: 
Wednesday, May 12, 2021 - 10:00am to 12:00pm
Event Location: ​
Toronto ON