CUASA Director honoured with award for outstanding work defending faculty rights

TORONTO, February 6, 2020 – The Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations (OCUFA) is pleased to announce that Carleton University Academic Staff Association (CUASA) Director and Senior Grievance and Arbitration Officer Christal Côté is a recipient of the inaugural OCUFA Award for Outstanding Contribution to Grievance/Arbitration. The award, sponsored by OCUFA’s Grievance Committee, recognizes individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the defence of collective agreements through the grievance/arbitration process.

“In the inaugural year for this award, we honour Christal Côté for her dedicated service as Senior Grievance and Arbitration Officer for CUASA and for her significant contributions to the OCUFA Grievance Committee,” said Rahul Sapra, OCUFA President. “Côté has shown a remarkable capacity to empathise with members and expertly support them through the grievance process.”

A member of the Law Society of Ontario and licensed paralegal, Côté combines her skills and experiences in human rights and labour law to provide in-house legal services for CUASA, training for CUASA’s representatives, and representation of members and the faculty association through the grievance process and at arbitrations. Her meticulous preparation and persuasive arguments have yielded notable successes in a challenging environment in which the number and complexity of members’ grievances have been increasing significantly. Beyond her work for CUASA, Côté generously contributes to the OCUFA Grievance Committee’s activities in information sharing, legal education, and capacity building amongst faculty associations across the province.

“OCUFA is deeply honoured to recognize those exceptional individuals who have demonstrated such a firm commitment to defending the rights of faculty members and other academic professionals,” said Sapra. “Christal’s many accomplishments for CUASA members and impact through the OCUFA Grievance Committee, along with her unwavering commitment to equity and fairness, make her a worthy and distinguished recipient of the inaugural OCUFA Award for Outstanding Contribution to Grievance/Arbitration.”

Côté will receive her award at a ceremony hosted by OCUFA in Toronto on February 8, 2020.

Founded in 1964, OCUFA represents 17,000 faculty and academic librarians in 30 faculty associations across Ontario.

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To arrange interviews or for more information, please contact:
Ben Lewis, OCUFA Communications Lead | 416-306-6033 | blewis@ocufa.on.ca