Graduate Students Bargaining Update 

November 2019

The union bargaining team met on November 6th to review and discuss member input gathered from our recent survey on working conditions among U of S TAs, RAs, and SAs.  Based on those survey results, your team has generated the following items in its unranked mandate for bargaining:

  • Strengthen harassment and discrimination language to ensure a fair and speedy process when an incident occurs.
  • Ensure Employment Supervisors receive training on the collective agreement so they understand members’ rights and supervisory responsibilities.
  • Ensure the union gets the information it needs from the Employer so it can defend the rights of members, and ensure members get the information they need so they know their rights.
  • Get more details in the letter of offer so members understand what their responsibilities are.
  • Ensure members receive notice of appointment at least a week before the appointment begins.
  • Ensure members have an opportunity to meet with the Employment supervisor to complete Appendix B during the first week of classes.
  • Ensure members are not required to work more hours than their contract stipulates without remuneration.
  • Improve compensation and benefits.

The union needs your feedback on the mandate the team has produced from the bargaining surveys.  To that end, we would like to provide you with two opportunities to share that feedback, either by email or in person.

In solidarity,

Your PSAC Local 40004 Bargaining Team

Saman Naghieh

Naheda Sahtout

Jeffery Zielinksi

Jesse Todd (PSAC Regional Rep)

Silja Freitag (PSAC Researcher)

John Eustace (PSAC Negotiator)

Meet Your Union at the GSA Orientation

We are excited to be part of the GSA’s Fall Orientation.

September 4th from 5 – 8 pm in BIOL 106 followed by a BBQ in the Bowl.

Come out to hear what it means to you as a graduate student working as a teaching assistant, research assistant, or student assistant to be part of a union.

Annual General Meeting – March 21st

Our Annual General Meeting for PSAC Local 40004 will be held on March 21st at 4:30pm in Arts 146. A meal will be provided.

The meeting is open to all PSAC Local 40004 members. we encourage all postdoctoral fellows, graduate student workers and veterinary residents and interns to attend so that you can find out what is happening with your union.

The AGM is the time to elect our Executive Officers for the coming year.

Executive positions are:

Vice President Graduate Student Workers
Vice President Postdoctoral Fellows
Chief Steward

If you are interested in a position or have questions, please send your union representative an email:

A link to the proposed agenda can be found at the following link:

AGENDA AGM March 2019

We hope to see you there!

-The Executive of PSAC Local 40004


Postdocs! Your new PDF Contract – highlights, and Q & A sessions

Hi all!

As per our brief email last week, the Arbitrator awarded our final contract and as of last Wednesday, it is officially in effect. It has been a long road to get here, and this is a big cause for celebration!!

Attached to this post you will find a PDF contract information kit, including a short “highlights package”, as well as the full language of the contract in its entirety. We encourage you all to read it, especially if you haven’t been with us since the beginning, and may have missed some pieces of information.

Since there are likely to be many questions, we invite you all attend one of our two Q&A sessions:

When: Tuesday, February 5, 2019

 Meeting 1: 12pm-1pm

 Meeting 2: 4pm-5pm

 Location: GSA commons

In the meantime, we will be working with the University HR on a timeline to implement new benefits and rights that are contained in this contract, including extended health and dental benefits, salary increases, and EI and CPP obligations. If you have urgent questions or concerns, please reach out to us at

A huge thank you to everyone for their support in this, and to the members of the bargaining team, past and present. You are all amazing.



Bargaining team member

2019-01-21 info kit – u of sask pdfs

Welcome BBQ

Your union is  celebrating you, the members of the Union of Graduate and Postdoctoral Workers at the University of Saskatchewan, as part of Orientation Week.  For new members and returning members we cordially invite you to….

• Outside of the GSA Building (1337 College Dr)
• September 7th from 4:00 – 6:00 pm

Bring your friends and family!

There will be swag to give away (union t-shirts, frisbees, water bottles, etc.)
You can meet and speak with the Executive of your local.
Meat and veggie options will be on offer.


Contact Your Union

Union Education – May 26, 2018

For members interested in learning more about their union there will be union education on May 26, 2018  from 9:00 to 4:30

It’s a great way to learn more about your union. Registered participants will receive a $50 per diem. If you need childcare please contact the Saskatoon Regional Office at (306) 244-3033.  When you register our component is Directly Chartered Local and our Local is 40004.

Register online

Date: May 26, 2018

Time: 9:00AM to 4:30PM

Location: Saskatoon Regional Office  (#5 – 511 1st Avenue North) (Map)

 Description:  This course will cover the following:
  • PSAC Structure
  • Dues
  • Why Sign a Membership Card?
  • Saskatchewan Employment Act
  • CBA (Collective Bargaining Agreement)
  • Grievances
  • Understanding Your Roles

If you have any questions, please contact the Saskatoon Regional Office.

Introducing Our New Rep Isaac!

Members, we are excited to introduce Isaac Armstrong! He will work with our local full-time and has years of union experience.

Isaac is located in 131 McLean Hall Monday-Friday 8:30-4:30. He can be reached by cell at 306-370-9399 or email at If you have questions about your union or need assistance with employment issues he is here to help. All conversations and correspondence with your union representative will remain confidential.

Isaac is a former federal public servant and PSAC member from 2006. He served as President, Vice-President and Shop Steward in his Locals. Isaac has 12 years of experience representing members in grievance and disciplinary hearings, as well as representing members on staffing complaints. He holds a M.A. in Labour Studies from the University of Massachusetts (Amherst, MA) and a B.A. in Sociology (Honours) from Bishop’s University (Sherbrooke, QC). Also, he is a graduate of the Labour College of Canada certificate program through the Canadian Labour Congress.