DCFA Contract Ratification FAQ

Over the last year, the DCFA has been negotiating a new Collective Agreement with Douglas College. The VP Negotiations has provided regular updates through Bargaining Bulletins available here.

The two parties met with a mediator on August 29th and August 31st and have now reached a tentative agreement.

This FAQ aims to answer questions DCFA members may have about the process of approving the contract through a ratification vote.

Ratification Votes

Now that the Bargaining Committee has secured a tentative agreement with management, a ratification vote will soon be put before Members to decide whether they are in favour of the tentative agreement.

Q: Will we get to see the tentative agreement before voting?

Yes. Before voting, Members will have access to the tentative agreement and will have opportunities to ask questions of the Bargaining Committee and discuss the merits and demerits of the offer on the table. The decision to ratify belongs to Members.

Q: What happens after the ratification vote?

If the ratification vote passes, then the DCFA awaits ratification by the employer (which, given the hierarchal structure of the employer’s organization, is usually a given at that stage). When both sides ratify, we will have a Collective Agreement that expires on March 31, 2025.

If the ratification vote fails, negotiations and/or job action must resume.

Q: Will we get retro pay?

Yes, back to April 1, 2022.

Q: When will we get that?

That still needs to be determined, but it’s usually within a month or two of completing the ratification process.

Q: Will faculty who have left the College between April 1, 2022, and now receive retro pay?

Yes, but it’s not automatic. After ratification, there will be a 12-week window for former DCFA Members to apply for retro pay. If this applies to you, be in touch with the DCFA for more information.

What’s Next?

Check back for further updates as bargaining continues.

Who do you talk to at the Douglas College Faculty Association?

About the Douglas College Faculty Association

The Douglas College Faculty Association (DCFA) has represented Douglas College faculty since 1971 (the College admitted its first students in September 1970), with campuses in New Westminster, Surrey, and Richmond. The DCFA operated as a Society until 1975 and then also became certified under the Labour Relations Act as the official bargaining unit for instructors, counsellors and librarians.

In 1979, Douglas College was split into two colleges. Douglas College continued operating North of the Fraser River, with its main campuses located in New Westminster and Coquitlam. A new college, Kwantlen College, with major campuses in Surrey and Richmond, assumed operations South of the Fraser River. The Douglas College Faculty Association (renamed Douglas and Kwantlen Faculty Association (DKFA) continued to represent faculty from both Douglas College and Kwantlen College. In 1989 the DKFA reorganized into two separate unions, the Douglas College Faculty Association (DCFA), representing Douglas College faculty, and the Kwantlen Faculty Association (KFA) representing Kwantlen College.

The DCFA represents regular and contract faculty in collective bargaining of salaries, benefits, and working conditions. The DCFA also represents faculty on issues affecting their work, including appointments, evaluation, benefit plans, workload, professional development, and working conditions.