Our TC team returned to Ottawa this week to resume bargaining our next collective agreement. Like our March session, the pace of bargaining remains slow. Unfortunately our team continues to see little difference between the Conservative and Liberal governments’ approaches. Despite the employer’s low level of interest in proposals that seek to address workplace problems, we continue to press them on our demands.
Fair economic increases
All PSAC tables proposed a general economic increase of 3% per year this week. This is in addition to the allowances and market adjustments that our team has or will be making in subsequent bargaining sessions.
These proposed increases are separate from the job-specific and classification-specific market adjustments that we will be proposing based on the pay study.
Addressing pay inequities: Pay study update
The TC pay study conducted by the Human Resources consulting firm Aon Hewitt is almost complete. This comprehensive pay study will be used as the basis for the rest of our wage proposal, which we plan to table at the next round of negotiations in June. The main objective of the study was to compare our pay with that of other similar jobs across the country in the public and private sectors.
We will use this study to demonstrate the need for fair compensation for our members and to push the employer for the market adjustments that we deserve.
Protections for whistleblowing
We continued to press the employer to improve protections for whistleblowers and protect members against reprisals for speaking out. Our demand to add whistleblower protections to the collective agreement would help create a “speak up” culture so members are protected when choosing to blow the whistle to protect the public interest. We outlined numerous flaws in the current legislation and we presented evidence that supports our demand.
Standing strong on sick leave
Our position is that we continue to seek either a renewal or improvements to the current sick leave regime.
We discussed our proposed changes to the Workforce Adjustment Appendix. The employer's bargaining team had a significant number of questions about our proposals that we will respond to in our next meeting. We reiterated our position against the contracting out of work. Many unions have identified this issue as a major concern in this round of bargaining.