UPEI saved $3.4M in salaries during month-long strike
The University of Prince Edward Island saved just over $3.4 million in salaries during a 26-day strike by faculty members, it said on Tuesday.
UPEI Faculty Association members walked off the job March 20. Points of dispute during talks to procure a new collective agreement were heavy workloads, the need to hire more full-time faculty members to cope with a growing student body, and a call for higher pay.
In a statement Tuesday, the university gave details of the net savings that accrued from not paying faculty members during the strike — and outlined how students are being compensated for the disruption to their semesters.
The total salary savings amounted to $3,430,840, with $2,553,294 being saved from the UPEI budget and $877,546 from the separate budget for the Atlantic Veterinary College.
As part of the settlement, the university paid the pension contributions of faculty members for the strike period, totalling $303,669. The AVC paid its striking faculty members emergency fees for cases that required urgent care. When combined with pension contributions for AVC faculty, that totalled $253,146.
That leaves $2,249,625 in net savings that is being distributed to UPEI students and $624,400 for AVC students, as follows:
Payments for UPEI's full-time domestic graduate and undergraduate students amount to $350 each.
International undergraduate students attending UPEI, who pay substantially higher tuition rates, are getting $700.
Domestic Doctor of Veterinary Medicine students at AVC are getting $1,050, while international students receive $4,200 in compensation.
Domestic part-time students are receiving $125 while international part-time students get $250.
"The university has structured the disbursement of the funds as fairly and equitably as possible, considering student status [full-time versus part-time] and whether students pay domestic versus international tuition fees," the university said in a statement.
Payments were scheduled to be made to eligible students by April 26, according to the university.