The following issues were addressed by the Caucus in the 2008-9 academic year. If you have suggestions for issues we should be addressing, please contact us.
Senior Women and Service Work
Caucus members have been talking recently about the burden many women, particularly more senior faculty women, face, of excessive service work. A recent report from the University of California at Irvine notes that junior faculty women have some protection from the burden of service work but found that “among the senior faculty ranks, women were picked disproportionately for service assignments, especially those that are time-consuming. Then those same women are criticized for not doing more research, and the theoretical credit awarded for service is never to be found”. (“Quiet Desperation”, 2008). For the full story seehttp://www.insidehighered.com/news/2008/06/12/women
This is an issue that the Caucus will be exploring further in the UVic context. If you wish to be part of this discussion, please contact us.
Last spring the Women’s Caucus steering committee discussed the issue of climate on campus. There are units on campus have workplace climates that are far from warm, particularly for women and minority groups. In fact in some cases environments can get sufficiently unbearable that people chose to leave UVic. The Steering Committee raised the possibility of working on a video project that could educate people on campus about this important issue. If you would like to become involved in discussions on this subject, please contact us.
Women, Health and Workplace Stress
Workplace health is a major issue, and is certainly significant for academic women, who are facing the increasing stresses related to overwork in more corporatized and managerial university structures. Many women are becoming ill, often seriously, and stress and overwork can be significant issues here. Women are often told that they need to take responsibility for their own health, but what does this message tell us in a context where we are constantly over-stretched and asked to do more? The Caucus will be holding a forum on women and health that will address some of these issues in early February 2009. If you wish to become involved in the forum, or just have some comments on these issues, please let us know.