MELD Sessionals COVID-19 Update

Brad WalchukUncategorized

Dear MELD Sessionals,

By now, we assume that you’re already aware of the cancellation of classes and exams, and we hope that you’ve ready our recent message sent to all sessional faculty. We’re sending this as a MELD-specific follow-up.

At this point, we’re unsure how the program plans on proceeding with the remainder of the academic year. We have reached out and are awaiting a response, and expect that many of you have done the same. It is our understanding that the MELD program will be closed like undergraduate and graduate classes.

Despite working on an hourly-rated model, we do not foresee the closure of classes to adversely impact you or your access to income. The decision to cancel classes was the employer’s – not yours. As such, we do not believe that the employer is in a position to withhold pay from you. While missed work normally has to be made up within five business days in order to get paid, this is because of changes to the unplanned leave provisions. Unplanned leave is initiated by an employee, not by the employer. The current situation is not one in which you’re unable to attend work and perform the related duties, but rather, one in which the employer has elected to close classes. The unplanned leave and make-up provisions do not apply in this situation.

Unfortunately, it remains unclear what the next steps are for MELD classes, and we will update you as soon as we have some additional clarity. There are various ways to provide make-up learning opportunities for students. We know that you are willing and able to work, and at this juncture, that is all that matters.

We have been informed that there is a joint cc/dd meeting on Monday at 12:30. We advise you all to attend via Zoom rather than travelling to campus.

If you have any additional questions, please let us know.