Equity and Diversity Committee

 TERMS OF REFERENCE [revised July, 2019]

  1. Status & Role:

The SMUFU Equity & Diversity Committee is a committee of the SMUFU Executive. It is responsible for advancing the work of the union in matters pertaining to equity, diversity, discrimination and racism in the workplace, and in supporting marginalized members (women, racialized people, LGBTQ2S+ people, people with disabilities, and Indigenous people). The Committee’s work will fall into three main areas: information gathering, policy advising, and advocacy.

The Committee Chairperson will consult and work in collaboration with the SMUFU Executive.

The Committee will make recommendations to the SMUFU Executive and report to the general membership.

  1. Composition

The Committee shall be composed of up to 8 persons, including:

  • The Chair or Co-Chairs
  • Five SMUFU members

The Chair (or Co-Chairs) of the SMUFU Equity and Diversity Committee will be appointed by the SMUFU Executive Committee, and will serve a two year term, with a possible renewal for an additional year.

Members of the SMUFU Equity and Diversity Committee will be appointed by the SMUFU Executive Committee and current/continuing members of the Equity and Diversity Committee following a nomination process. The tenure of members shall normally be two years and is renewable for an additional one-year term.

Members interested in serving on the committee or as Chair will submit a brief statement of interest, background, and experience to the Executive.

In appointing Committee chairs and members, the Committee and the Executive will consider the representation of each of the following groups:

    • Women
    • Indigenous people
    • Racialized and visible minority people
    • People with disabilities
    • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Two-Spirit, and Queer people

If the group of qualified nominees for the Committee in any year are not representative of these equity-seeking groups, the Executive will take action to recruit and provide training for new members.

  1. Functions
  1. Information gathering:

The Committee will identify, review, and share knowledge about issues of equity and diversity in the workplace on an ongoing basis, gathering information through the following means:

  • Verbal and written communications received from members, with the member’s consent
  • Review of policies, events, and issues in the workplace related to employment equity, racism, sexism, harassment accessibility, and discrimination
  • Ongoing review of these issues in university teaching and across the public sector, in consultation with ANSUT, CAUT, and other professional organizations

This information will be used for the development of guidelines, policies, best practices, and actions for enhancing equity and diversity.

  1. Advisory:

The Committee will advise the Executive Committee and the general SMUFU membership about workplace equity and issues, make recommendations, and/or assist in finding appropriate supports and resources. The Executive Committee may from time to time request the Equity and Diversity Committee to research specific issues or policies.

  1. Advocacy:

As a committee of the SMUFU membership, the Committee may advocate within and beyond the institution on specific issues concerning equity in the workplace. Through regular reports to the Executive and general membership, the Committee will work to highlight equity concerns.

  1. Mode of operation

The committee shall meet at least twice per term, or four times per year.

A quorum for meetings of the Committee is 50% of its members.

  1. Reporting

The Committee shall regularly communicate, both verbally and in writing, to the SMUFU Executive through the Committee Chairperson.

The Committee Chairperson shall prepare and submit a summary report of activities to the general membership at least once per calendar year.

  1. Confidentiality

The SMUFU Equity and Diversity Committee shall exercise discretion when gathering and reporting information about SMUFU members. The Committee members should abide whenever possible or when required to the CAUT Policy Statement on Confidentiality in the Grievance Process. The Committee will direct any questions about potential or active grievances to the Grievance Officer.