Week 5 – Librarians


 “To do effective research, you need access to research… you can’t have an excellent University without an excellent Library.”- FA Member
UPEI’s academic Librarians are an important group within our Faculty Association. Like faculty, Librarians hold terminal degrees in their fields; undertake and publish research; participate in University governance; and engage in professional practice that includes teaching and curriculum development. Unlike other FA members, UPEI’s Librarians curate a budget and provide teaching and research support on behalf of the entire University. 
In Fall 2021, the Faculty Association met with the FA Librarians to hear their concerns. Some of the challenges they brought to our attention include:

Reduced numbers of full-time, permanent track librarians resulting in unsustainable workloads: the number of Librarians has decreased even as enrolments have increased and new programs have been implemented.

Static budgets that don’t take into account industry price inflation, program growth, or enrolment growth, meaning that Librarians must make difficult financial decisions about what resources must be cut.

New programs and faculties that have required expanded resources and support, putting additional pressure on an already stretched budget and overworked Librarians.   

The MacLeans University Rankings further illustrate the story:
Maclean’s measures the percentage of a university’s operating budget allocated to library services.
Maclean’s also measures the percentage of the library budget spent on acquisitions, including electronic resources: this speaks to how judiciously Librarians curate resources
within the budget they are given.
It is clear that our Librarians are doing their absolute best with increasingly inadequate resources. It is equally clear that the difficulties they face have negative implications for everyone who is teaching, learning, and researching at UPEI. Our Librarians need our support, so that they can continue to support all of us.

You are UPEI

As we head into bargaining for our next Collective Agreement, we have an opportunity to make sure that UPEI Administration hears our concerns and acts on them. The key to success is collective action: there has never been a better time for us to work together on issues that affect academic staff, students, UPEI workers, and the entire Island community.
Here’s how you can do your part:

 Talk to us: Tell us how these issues have been affecting you HERE.
Get involved: Join us for regular meetings and consider joining an FA committee or serving as a grievance officer.
Show your support: Use our downloadable logos as your photo for online meetings and lectures. Download them HERE.
Stay in the loop: to prevent communications disruptions as we head into negotiations, share your personal email address HERE.
Stay social: share social media content to help spread the word. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook by clicking on the icons below.  

Together, We Are UPEI. 

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