FB bargaining team tells CBSA that workers deserve better

Our FB bargaining team met with Treasury Board and CBSA from September 9-12, to continue talks for a new collective agreement.

At the outset of bargaining, our team put management on notice that recent events in Emerson, Manitoba and at Pearson Airport in Toronto only serve to strengthen our resolve to achieve enhanced protections for PSAC/CIU members at CBSA. To that end, we spoke again to our proposals prohibiting abuse of authority, demanding protections against management harassment and surveillance in the workplace.

We also introduced proposals that would greatly enhance protections in the context of discipline, including paid leave for investigatory suspensions. Clearly, CBSA management cannot be trusted.

Fixing problems

We raised at the table problems related to excessive management discretion concerning career advancement and tuition reimbursement. We also indicated that there are serious concerns with respect to ABC machines at airports, and spoke to our proposals to protect against the contracting out of our work, including work performed by our Inland Enforcement members. None of these issues have been resolved.

Government tables “Go-to-work-sick” proposal

This week, the government presented the same proposal to gut sick leave to all of the Treasury Board bargaining tables. Among other things, the government’s proposal calls for a short-term disability plan, the elimination of sick leave banks and a maximum of 37.5 hours of sick leave a year. Our team joined all PSAC bargaining teams in rejecting this proposal.

We indicated that we are interested in negotiating improvements in this round of bargaining, and not concessions. We also reminded Treasury Board and CBSA that federal law prohibits unilateral changes to our sick leave plan, and that no changes can be made without negotiation and written agreement from our union. We will fight to defend our sick leave.

We are meeting again the week of November 17.

For more information, and to see our proposals and those of the employer, visit psacunion.ca/fb.

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September 12, 2014
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