We wanted to remind you about important changes to your entitlement under the collective agreement that came into effect today (September 1, 2023). These improvements were the direct result of the support that the bargaining team received from postdocs during our most recent round of collective bargaining.
- Effective September 1, 2023, the minimum salary increases from $40,000 per year to $42,500 per year for full-time work (or a pro-rated equivalent). Anyone making less than $42,500 per year for full-time work will see a wage increase on your next pay cheque. If you are entitled to this increase and do not see it, please let us know.
- Your entitlement under the Health Care Spending Account (HCSA) has increased from $300 per academic year to $450 per academic year, also effective September 1st. This account covers many items that are not covered or not fully covered by your SunLife health and dental plan. More information on the HCSA, including an expense form, can be found here: https://cupe3906.org/postdocs-unit-3/post-doc-health-spending-account/
- Most importantly, the new (and vastly improved) SunLife health and dental plan is now in place. The new plan offers considerable improvements to virtually all items, and covers many at 100% (up to a maximum of $500 per year). A comparison of the previous plan to the new plan can be found here: https://cupe3906.org/files/2023/06/Postdoc-Health-and-Dental-Plan-Summary-Chart.pdf
- The new SunLife plan is available at no cost to you and your dependents, though you will need to enroll your dependents to ensure they have access. You should have received a link to this form from human resources: https://hr.mcmaster.ca/app/uploads/2019/01/Fillable-Extended-Health-and-Dental-Positive-Enrolment-Form-for-Active-Members_May-2020-1.pdf). The new SunLife plan means that the existing Equitable Life dental plan ended on August 31, 2023. Existing expenses incurred prior to September 1, 2023 can still be made and must be submitted to Equitable Life within 60 days of when the expense occurred.
- Your professional development allowance recently increased to $1000 per year. More information on that, as well as the application form, can be found here: https://cupe3906.org/postdocs-unit-3/postdoctoral-fellow-professional-development-fund/
- In our most recent round of bargaining, we also secured a Gender Affirmation Fund and Reproductive Health Fund, which covers up to $2000 per academic year for eligible expenses. More information on that, as well as the application form, can be found here: https://cupe3906.org/postdocs-unit-3/gender-affirmation-fund-reproductive-health-fund/
- Finally, we also secured improvements to the Postdoctoral Support Fund, which now provides up to $750 per year to cover eligible expenses, including child care, moving/relocation costs, and other unexpected or one-time emergency costs. The application for that fund is available here: https://gs.mcmaster.ca/app/uploads/2020/01/postdoctoral_support_fund_2017.pdf (please note you only need to fill out ‘part B’ in your initial application).
CUPE 3906 Staff and Executive Committee