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Minutes of the October 5, 2020 Executive Board Web Conference

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October 5, 2020

The Executive Board was called to order at 9:13 a.m. President Thomas was in the Chair. All members were present. Clarke Eaton, Advisor to the President and Filomena Lofranco, Executive Assistant to the President were also in attendance.

Agenda

The agenda was amended to add:

  • Recommendation from the October 5, 2020 Executive Committee meeting: Local 5119
  • Electronic voting
  • CAAT-S investigation email
  • United Way
  • TAR’s
  • CAAT-A Discussion
  • Boards of Education Sector

Moved by Thomas/Almeida

Therefore be it resolved that the OPSEU/SEFPO Executive Board adopt the OPSEU/SEFPO Executive Board Minutes of the September 8, 2020 Executive Board web conference.

Roll Call #1

Ainsworth, Anna    for

Almeida, Eddy    for

Arvelin, Ed      for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave    for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara   for

Maclam, Kenneth for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara    for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin   for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie              for

Thomas, Warren             for

Usher, Joel                    for

Van Zetten, Jennifer          for

Carried 21 for 0 against

President’s Report

Internal Issues

Timed presentation

Kevin Thomas from SHARE to give a presentation to the Board at 9:23a.m.

Timed presentation

Eric O’Brien, General Counsel to give a presentation to the Board at 10:10a.m.

Treasurer’s Report

  • Financials
  • Contingency Fund
  • Constituency Fund
  • Defence Fund
  • ODSP Fund – OPS Job Protection Fund
  • ODSP Fund – MERC Action Plan
  • ODSP Fund – OPS Redeployment Fund
  • LBED – Anti-privatization Fund
  • Other Business

President’s Report

Internal Issues

November Budget Executive Committee and Executive Board meeting dates

Moved by Thomas/Almeida

Whereas the November Executive Committee and Executive Board meetings are reserved to discuss the annual budget; and

Whereas the Executive Board has been meeting at the beginning of every month since the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic; and

Whereas the dates scheduled prior to the COVID-19 Pandemic to discuss the 2021 Budget were set out as: November 19 & 24, 2020 for the Executive Committee and November 25 & 26, 2020 for the Executive Board;

Therefore be it resolved that the new meeting dates to discuss the 2021 Budget will be: November 2 & 16 for the Executive Committee and November 17 & 18 for the Executive Board; and

Be it further resolved that these meetings will begin at 9:30AM and take place over Zoom.

Roll Call #2

Ainsworth, Anna    for

Almeida, Eddy    for

Arvelin, Ed      for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave    for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara   for

Maclam, Kenneth for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara    for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin   for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie    for

Thomas, Warren   for

Usher, Joel      for

Van Zetten, Jennifer  for

Carried 21 for 0 against

Referral from the September 8, 2020 Executive Board web conference: CAAT- A Divisional Meeting Postponement

Referral to the President’s office to be reported back within 2 weeks.

Whereas on June 1, 2020, the Executive Board postponed the 2020 OPS Divisional Conference due to the Covid pandemic; and

Whereas CAAT A Division is scheduled to hold their Divisional Meeting in the fall of 2020; and

Whereas the COVID-19 pandemic is still very much a threat to the health and safety of OPSEU/SEFPO members; and

Whereas OPSEU/SEFPO is not yet fully operational; and

Whereas the Executive Board has already decided to postpone all Local elections and extend terms upon review after OPSEU/SEFPO becomes fully operational; and

Whereas all Divisions and leadership positions within OPSEU/SEFPO should be treated similarly; and

Whereas OPSEU/SEFPO members require leadership within their divisions during these unprecedented times; and

Whereas it would be unsafe and contrary to recognized union health and safety principles for members to meet in large gatherings at this time;

Therefore be it resolved that the 2020 CAAT A Divisional meetings be postponed until such a time as one may be held in accordance with the indicated resolves, and that the terms for the elected leadership be extended until OPSEU/SEFPO resumes normal operations; and

Be it further resolved that this decision be reviewed once OPSEU/SEFPO returns to its normal operations.

Report that was provided back to the Board:

Greetings,

At our last Executive Board meeting on September 8, 2020, the matter regarding the upcoming CAAT-A Divisional Meeting was referred back to my office for further investigation. Over the past two weeks, I have consulted with the Chair of the OPS division, considered the Constitution and the consultation that occurred between my senior leadership team and the CAAT-A Divex. I have also had staff investigate virtual platform voting; its security and reliability.

In June, the Board made a unanimous decision to postpone the OPS Divisionals until it is safe to convene a meeting of the delegates. The Chair of the CERC, Neil Martin, has reconfirmed that both he and all the MERC chairs remain supportive of this decision.

Democracy is the foundation of OPSEU. We are a member driven union that is governed by the Constitution. Convention remains the supreme ruling body of OPSEU. No changes to our constitution can occur without sixty-six and two-thirds support of delegates supporting any change at Convention; therefore, I remain governed by the Constitution. The President is the sole arbiter on interpretation of the Constitution.

In a correspondence from the CAAT-A Divex dated September 23, 2020 to Administrator Steve Saysell, the Divex put forth the notion, “Imperfect democracy is better than the suspension of democracy.” I couldn’t disagree more. Any exercise declared as democratic that potentially shuts out some members or may be subject to manipulation or corruption of the process is no democracy at all.

This brings me to the pitfalls of electronic voting. Divisional elections are determined by the votes of the delegates. It relies on authentication. In a virtual setting, delegates are elected in their locals and subsequently cast their votes on ballots electronically assigned to them. Unlike a delegated convention, in a virtual meeting, there is no sergeant-at-arms. PIN numbers or voter registration numbers can easily be shared amongst non-delegates, which would be in contravention of the rules of procedures and our constitutional obligation to ascertain that only bona fide delegates cast ballots. While it may be argued that this risk is minimal, there is still a

potential risk that would be impossible to unravel if a dispute were to occur. Further, as per our collective agreement with OPSSU, balloting in this construct is staff work.

There is a practical pathway to resolution. I am pleased that in the above referenced correspondence with Administrator Steve Sayell and the Divex, the Divex acknowledges that they are “very willing to work with OPSEU on how to do that in a way that is fair, equitable and in keeping with the constitution.” As such, I am recommending that the CAAT-A Divisional Meeting, if conducted at all, proceeds without elections. I recommend that elections be held only when it is safe to gather in appropriate numbers. Further, the existing elected team shall remain in office until those elections are held, which is consistent with the Board’s previous decision in regards to elections in Locals.

The upcoming bargaining conference can continue to be planned subject to further discussions.

It is important that the Executive Board continue to show leadership like we did when we decided to postpone the OPS Divisional. By doing this, we not only protect the health and safety of our members, but we also protect the vitality of our democracy and the integrity of our Constitution; a document we all swear oath to uphold.

In solidarity,

Smokey

Moved by Thomas/Almeida – That the CAAT-A Divisional Meeting Postponement motion be referred to the next regularly scheduled board meeting, or if needed a special board meeting will be convened before the next meeting.

Roll Call #3

Ainsworth, Anna    for

Almeida, Eddy    for

Arvelin, Ed      for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave    for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara   for

Maclam, Kenneth for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara    for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin   for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie    for

Thomas, Warren   for

Usher, Joel      for

Van Zetten, Jennifer  for

Carried 21 for 0 against

HPD Day of Action

Discussion

Central Labour Updates (OFL/NUPGE/CLC)

President Thomas provided an update

Staffing Issues – In Camera

New Business

Zoom licenses and committees/caucuses

Discussion

Committee Reports

Disability Rights Caucus

October 2020 Liaison Report to the OPSEU Executive Board

  • Caucus members attended a Webinar re: Disability Tax Credit – T2201 Form and plan to educate fellow members who might be eligible for the credit
  • The DRC last met via video conference / teleconference on September 16th and 24th
  • Given the cancelation the 2020 OPSEU/SEFPO Annual Convention, they have an ongoing concern about when the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities

Act (AODA) compliance report will be issued

○ Reference 2019 Resolution HR5

○ Also noted in SMP Recommendation #26

  • Ongoing discussion about SMP recommendations
  • The Caucus prepared a questionnaire to gather information from our members about COVID-19 paid leave

○ The survey is currently open on opseu.org:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DZJN82J

○ Will remain posted until October 15th

○ Please share!

○ Data received will be organized and discussed at next meeting

  • A caucus member, with special WSIB insight, brought forward a considerable COVID-19 related concern to the group: once a worker who had been approved for WSIB receives a negative test, regardless of ongoing illness, that worker is to be cut off from WSIB benefits

○ Obviously this has huge implications for those left with chronic ailments caused by the virus

  • Next meeting planned for October 27th

Afternoon

The meeting resumed at 1:04p.m.

Recommendation from the October 5, 2020 Executive Committee meeting:

New assignment Local 5119

Moved by Thomas/Strachan

Whereas on July 22, 2020, OPSEU/SEFPO became the certified bargaining agent for 90 LifeLabs couriers; and

Whereas these members work throughout the Greater Toronto Area, and have headquarters in Region 5; and

Whereas according to OPSEU/SEFPO policy, a local must have at least 100 members;

Whereas 75 more workers from LifeLabs are awaiting a decision from the OLRB on whether OPSEU/SEFPO will become their certified bargaining agent; and

Whereas OPSEU/SEFPO expects a positive outcome from the OLRB for these 75 workers;

Therefore be it resolved that the OPSEU/SEFPO Executive Board approve that the 90 couriers from LifeLabs with headquarters in Region 5 be assigned to Local 5119; and

Be it further resolved that upon receipt of a positive decision from the OLRB, the additional 75 members will also be assigned to Local 5119; and

Be it further resolved that this change becomes retroactive to July 22, 2020.

Roll Call #4

Ainsworth, Anna    for

Almeida, Eddy    for

Arvelin, Ed      for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave    for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara   for

Maclam, Kenneth for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara    for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin   for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie    for

Thomas, Warren   for

Usher, Joel      for

Van Zetten, Jennifer  for

Carried 21 for 0 against

New Business

In-person OPSEU/SEFPO Meetings

Discussion

Work of the Equity Committee and Caucuses

Moved by Usher/Labelle

Whereas the Social Mapping Project Recommendation #13 states:

“Heighten the visibility and transparency of the Committees and Caucuses within the membership.

– Suggested Approach: Undertake an immediate investment in assessing and improving the information available to members regarding the work of the Equity Committees and Caucuses….”; and

Whereas OPSEU/SEFPO should utilize all means to advance equity issues, including supporting and promoting the work of the Equity Committees and Caucuses; and

Whereas it is important that OPSEU/SEFPO members are aware of the issues and the work that Equity Committees and Caucuses are involved in; and

Whereas Equity Committee and Caucus visibility could be heightened by ensuring the work of Equity Committees and Caucuses is credited when they submit material that is published or otherwise used in OPSEU/SEFPO communications; and

Whereas the Disability Rights Caucus was instrumental in assisting with the drafting of this motion;

Therefore be it resolved that when the full or partial work of an Equity Committee/Caucus is published or otherwise used in an OPSEU/SEFPO communication, the name of the contributing Equity Committee/Caucus will be clearly credited in the communication.

Roll Call #5

Ainsworth, Anna    for

Almeida, Eddy    for

Arvelin, Ed      for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave    for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara   for

Maclam, Kenneth for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara    for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin   for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie    for

Thomas, Warren   for

Usher, Joel      for

Van Zetten, Jennifer  for

Carried 21 for 0 against

Bill 195 and Pandemic Premium issues

Moved by Labelle/Kwok

Whereas orders were passed under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) in March that impacted provisions of the Collective Agreement; and

Whereas OPSEU Hospital Professionals Division has many members covered by the Central Collective Agreement that was impacted; and

Whereas OPSEU Hospital Professional members not covered by the Central Collective have language that mirrors the Central Collective Agreement; and

Whereas the government announced Pandemic Premium for “healthcare heroes” working in acute care settings and other areas in April; and

Whereas the majority of OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals members were not covered under the Pandemic Premium; and

Whereas OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals Division Locals and members engaged in a letter writing campaign, lobbying campaign, petition, twitter storms, and more; and

Whereas OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals Division Locals have been joining with other Unions in their workplaces to lobby for expansion of Pandemic Premium as well as the repeal of Bill 195; and

Whereas other unions are exploring legal action over Bill 195 and have served notice to the Ontario Hospital Association; and

Whereas Local presidents and highest-ranking continue to receive questions and concerns regarding Bill 195 and Pandemic Premium which has prompted queries to the Hospital Professionals Divisional Executive;

Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU will provide the legal resources and supports to the Hospital Professionals Division to investigate other avenues and legal challenges around Bill 195 and pandemic premium.

Moved by Nancekivell/Kwok – Amendment:

After “Hospital Professionals Division” add “and any other interested sector”

Roll Call #6

Ainsworth, Anna   for

Almeida, Eddy   for

Arvelin, Ed against

Cain, Geoff  for

Doran, Dave  for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley   for

Labelle, Sara  for

Langford, Tara  for

Maclam, Kenneth against

Maszczakiewicz, Tara  for

Morton, Lucy   for

Nancekivell, Laurie for

Perron, Janel   for

Rondeau, Nathalie  for

Smith-Rice, Erin  for

Steinbrunner, Ken for

Strachan, Edie  for

Thomas, Warren   against

Usher, Joel  for

Van Zetten, Jennifer  for

Carried 18 for 3 against

First Vice-President/Treasurer Almeida in the Chair

The question was called on the motion as amended:

Whereas orders were passed under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) in March that impacted provisions of the Collective Agreement; and

Whereas OPSEU Hospital Professionals Division has many members covered by the Central Collective Agreement that was impacted; and

Whereas OPSEU Hospital Professional members not covered by the Central Collective have language that mirrors the Central Collective Agreement; and

Whereas the government announced Pandemic Premium for “healthcare heroes” working in acute care settings and other areas in April; and

Whereas the majority of OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals members were not covered under the Pandemic Premium; and

Whereas OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals Division Locals and members engaged in a letter writing campaign, lobbying campaign, petition, twitter storms, and more; and

Whereas OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals Division Locals have been joining with other Unions in their workplaces to lobby for expansion of Pandemic Premium as well as the repeal of Bill 195; and

Whereas other unions are exploring legal action over Bill 195 and have served notice to the Ontario Hospital Association; and

Whereas Local presidents and highest-ranking continue to receive questions and concerns regarding Bill 195 and Pandemic Premium which has prompted queries to the Hospital Professionals Divisional Executive;

Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU will provide the legal resources and supports to the Hospital Professionals Division and any other interested sectors, to investigate other avenues and legal challenges around Bill 195 and pandemic premium.

President Thomas in the Chair

Moved by Arvelin/Maclam – Amendment:

Add the end of the sentence add “and report back to the President’s office and the executive board any and all resources and supports found.”

Roll Call #7

Ainsworth, Anna    for

Almeida, Eddy    for

Arvelin, Ed      for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave    for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara   for

Maclam, Kenneth for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara    for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin   for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie    for

Thomas, Warren   for

Usher, Joel      for

Van Zetten, Jennifer  for

Carried 21 for 0 against

The question was called on the motion as amended:

Whereas orders were passed under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) in March that impacted provisions of the Collective Agreement; and

Whereas OPSEU Hospital Professionals Division has many members covered by the Central Collective Agreement that was impacted; and

Whereas OPSEU Hospital Professional members not covered by the Central Collective have language that mirrors the Central Collective Agreement; and

Whereas the government announced Pandemic Premium for “healthcare heroes” working in acute care settings and other areas in April; and

Whereas the majority of OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals members were not covered under the Pandemic Premium; and

Whereas OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals Division Locals and members engaged in a letter writing campaign, lobbying campaign, petition, twitter storms, and more; and

Whereas OPSEU’s Hospital Professionals Division Locals have been joining with other Unions in their workplaces to lobby for expansion of Pandemic Premium as well as the repeal of Bill 195; and

Whereas other unions are exploring legal action over Bill 195 and have served notice to the Ontario Hospital Association; and

Whereas Local presidents and highest-ranking continue to receive questions and concerns regarding Bill 195 and Pandemic Premium which has prompted queries to the Hospital Professionals Divisional Executive;

Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU will provide the legal resources and supports to the Hospital Professionals Division and any other interested sectors, to investigate other avenues and legal challenges around Bill 195 and pandemic premium and report back to the President’s office and the executive board any and all resources and supports found.

Roll Call #8

Ainsworth, Anna    for

Almeida, Eddy    for

Arvelin, Ed      for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave    for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara   for

Maclam, Kenneth for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara    for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin   for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie    for

Thomas, Warren   for

Usher, Joel      for

Van Zetten, Jennifer  for

Carried 21 for 0 against

Electronic voting

Moved by Nancekivell/Strachan

Whereas this Executive Board passed a motion indicating that when Locals wants to hold local elections/ratification vote, they will inform their staff representative in advance and seek guidance in preparing a report to the President of OPSEU/SEFPO, via the Regional Supervisor, which included a list of items to be included in the report; and

Whereas this Executive Board passed a motion previously, indicating that Local Executive Committee elections be postponed until the limit of gatherings of 5 or more be lifted and when OPSEU/SEFPO returns to normal operations, however still allowed for locals to seek permission from the President’s Office to conduct electronic voting; and

Whereas there have been Locals denied the ability to conduct elections/votes based on an interpretation that the Executive Board has extended term limits and therefore were denied, even though all parameters were appropriately addressed; and

Therefore be it resolved that Locals who would like to conduct their local elections, ratification or strike votes, follow the process previously approved by the Executive Board and address all of the areas identified; and

Be it further resolved that the President’s Office, via the Regional Supervisor, will ensure the Local’s address all of the areas of concern; and

Be it further resolved that provided the above items are addressed, these locals will not be prohibited to hold such elections/votes.

First Vice President/Treasurer Almeida in the Chair

Move by Morton/Perron –Referral to the next board meeting in December

Roll Call #9

Ainsworth, Anna    against

Almeida, Eddy   for

Arvelin, Ed   for

Cain, Geoff  against

Doran, Dave   for

Finucane, Drew    for

Kwok, Kingsley against

Labelle, Sara  against

Langford, Tara against

Maclam, Kenneth  against

Maszczakiewicz, Tara against

Morton, Lucy   for

Nancekivell, Laurie   against

Perron, Janel    for

Rondeau, Nathalie  against

Smith-Rice, Erin     against

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie     against

Thomas, Warren  for

Usher, Joel   against

Van Zetten, Jennifer          –

DEFEATED 8 for 12 against

President Thomas in the Chair

The question was called on the motion:

Whereas this Executive Board passed a motion indicating that when Locals wants to hold local elections/ratification vote, they will inform their staff representative in advance and seek guidance in preparing a report to the President of OPSEU/SEFPO, via the Regional Supervisor, which included a list of items to be included in the report; and

Whereas this Executive Board passed a motion previously, indicating that Local Executive Committee elections be postponed until the limit of gatherings of 5 or more be lifted and when OPSEU/SEFPO returns to normal operations, however still allowed for locals to seek permission from the President’s Office to conduct electronic voting; and

Whereas there have been Locals denied the ability to conduct elections/votes based on an interpretation that the Executive Board has extended term limits and therefore were denied, even though all parameters were appropriately addressed; and

Therefore be it resolved that Locals who would like to conduct their local elections, ratification or strike votes, follow the process previously approved by the Executive Board and address all of the areas identified; and

Be it further resolved that the President’s Office, via the Regional Supervisor, will ensure the Local’s address all of the areas of concern; and

Be it further resolved that provided the above items are addressed, these locals will not be prohibited to hold such elections/votes.

First Vice-President/Treasurer Almeida in the Chair

Roll Call #10

Ainsworth, Anna     for

Almeida, Eddy    against

Arvelin, Ed    against

Cain, Geoff    for

Doran, Dave   against

Finucane, Drew  against

Kwok, Kingsley             for

Labelle, Sara   for

Langford, Tara  against

Maclam, Kenneth   against

Maszczakiewicz, Tara  against

Morton, Lucy  against

Nancekivell, Laurie   for

Perron, Janel  for

Rondeau, Nathalie against

Smith-Rice, Erin   against

Steinbrunner, Ken   against

Strachan, Edie   for

Thomas, Warren    against

Usher, Joel  for

Van Zetten, Jennifer          –

DEFEATED 8 for 12 against

Anna Ainsworth, Geoff Cain, Kingsley Kwok, Sara Labelle, Laurie Nancekivell, Janel Perron, Edie Strachan and Joel Usher filed minority reports.

President Thomas in the Chair

CAAT-S investigation email

Discussion

United Way

Discussion

TAR’s

Discussion

CAAT-A Discussion

Discussion

Moved by Almeida/Perron – Move into committee of the whole

Roll Call #11

Ainsworth, Anna   for

Almeida, Eddy for

Arvelin, Ed for

Cain, Geoff   for

Doran, Dave for

Finucane, Drew  for

Kwok, Kingsley  for

Labelle, Sara  for

Langford, Tara  for

Maclam, Kenneth    for

Maszczakiewicz, Tara for

Morton, Lucy  for

Nancekivell, Laurie for

Perron, Janel     for

Rondeau, Nathalie   for

Smith-Rice, Erin    for

Steinbrunner, Ken   for

Strachan, Edie   for

Thomas, Warren    against

Usher, Joel   for

Van Zetten, Jennifer          –

Carried 19 for 1 against

Boards of Education Sector

Discussion

Adjournment

The Executive Board adjourned at 3:13p.m. All members were present except Jennifer Van Zetten, the reason was acceptable to the Chair.

Warren (Smokey) Thomas, President
Nicole Glass, Corporate Secretary