Resolutions Submitted by the Deadline of February 18, 2022 Submitting Bodies (Ministry and Sector, Division, Locals, Area Councils, Executive Board, and Provincial Committees)
Resolutions Committee Report
February 18, 2022
- Resolutions Received from Submitting Bodies (Ministry and Sector, Division, Locals, Area Councils, Executive Board, and Provincial Committees):
|No. of Resolutions Received:||40|
|No. of Resolutions Referred to Constitutional Committee||1|
|No. of Resolutions Rejected*:||1|
|No. of Resolutions Accepted:||38|
* Resolutions are rejected because of failure to meet the requirements outlined in “Your Guide to Resolutions and Constitutional Amendments”, i.e. resolution which is already policy, failing to meet the deadline, improperly voted, or the subject is deemed to be a bargaining issue, etc. The Committee voted on each rejection.
2. Section G – Resolutions:
Resolutions that were received on the deadline of February 18, 2022, and accepted by the Committee are in the Resolutions Book – Section G, categorized by subject. Identical or similar resolutions are only printed once in the book, but with all other submitting bodies clearly identified.
All delegates are encouraged to review the Resolutions Book prior to Convention.
3. Report of the Resolutions Committee:
This year, the first report of the Resolutions Committee will be in your Convention kits.
4. Emergency Resolutions to Convention:
An Emergency Resolution to Convention is a motion which is:
- truly unexpected; and
- urgent; and
- of great importance to the Convention
- and it is NOT an issue that could have been foreseen prior to the resolution deadline date and submitted in the proper
However, if such an issue arises, please provide your motion in writing with a rationale, to any member of the Resolutions Committee. We will assess its merits and recommend to the Chair of the Convention our opinion on the merits of any and all proposed emergency resolutions received.
The “Emergency Resolutions Guidelines” will be included in your registration kit.
5. Alternative Format:
A Large Print version of Section G has been prepared and is available on request. Please contact the Convention Office at email@example.com to obtain a copy.
6. Where do you find the Committee at Convention?
The Resolutions Committee will be available from 8:30 – 9:00 a.m. during Convention. The committee will be located in the Halton Room at the Intercontinental Hotel.
7. Activities of the Committee since last Convention:
- The Committee dealt with the resolutions that the 2019 Convention did not deal with, for preparation of a final report to the Board for their action.
- The Committee met in February to prepare for the printing of the Resolutions Book.
- The Committee met in March to prioritize and make recommendations to Convention regarding the submitted
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Resolutions Committee member for your region. In the meantime, the Resolutions Committee hopes you enjoy a good Convention.
In solidarity, Authorized for Distribution:
Elaine Bagnall Warren (Smokey) Thomas
OPSEU Convention Policy, Section 4 Terms of Reference
- Upon receipt of proposed resolutions, where several identical or nearly identical resolutions are submitted, select one of such resolutions as being representative of all, and print only that resolution in the Convention manual, taking care to identify all locals that submitted such
- Examine all proposed resolutions having collective bargaining implications, determine which are specific contract demands (as opposed to general bargaining objectives of the Union,) and to refer such specific contract demands back to the submitting body with the recommendation that they be presented at demand setting
- Omit from the Convention manual those resolutions that are submitted contrary to Article 13.8, namely, late resolutions and those submitted without the required accompaniment of signed minutes of the meeting at which they were adopted. Such minutes must contain evidence that a quorum was present and that each resolution was presented and voted upon separately.
- When preparing the report to Convention, the Committee may check with the originating body when the intent is not clear, so that a resolution can be clarified by changing words but not intent.
- Combine similar resolutions into one resolution encompassing the spirit of several or prepare composite resolutions which may be the sum of several resolutions (but which may be different from any of the submitted resolutions,) and thus attempt to build the broadest consensus for a complete policy
- Divide the resolutions into categories (such as internal, economics, politics, industrial relations, etc.) and within categories, assign priorities on the assumption that there may not be time to deal with all resolutions in every
- Make recommendations to the Chairperson of the Convention on the classification of emergency To be classified as “Emergency,” a resolution must deal with a matter that is urgent and important and unexpected.
- Resolutions submitted that are already OPSEU policy, shall be returned to the submitting
A1 Statutory Resolutions
Therefore be it resolved that in compliance with Section 129 of the Corporations Act, the Convention endorse the actions of the Executive Board from the closing of the last Convention until the closing of this Convention.
A2 Statutory Resolutions
Therefore be it resolved that in compliance with Articles 26.2 and 28.4 of the Constitution and Section 94 of the Corporations Act, PWC, PricewaterhouseCoopers, be Auditors of OPSEU/SEFPO for the fiscal year January 1, 2022 through to December 31, 2022 and the Executive Board fix the Auditors’ remuneration.
A3 Statutory Resolutions
Therefore be it resolved that in compliance with Article 26.2 of the Constitution and Section 97 of the Corporations Act, the Financial Statements for the 12-month period ending December 2021, including the Statement of Financial Position, the Statement of Revenue and Expenditures, the Statement of Fund Balances and the Statement of Cash Flows, together with the Auditors’ report thereon, and all transactions reflected thereby be approved and that the President and First Vice-President/Treasurer be authorized to sign the financial statements on behalf of the Executive Board.
Therefore be it resolved that where part time, seasonal, temporary, casual, or otherwise precarious employed members are elected to a bargaining team, and they do not have wages to replace during days scheduled for bargaining or caucus meetings, that OPSEU pay them for the equivalent of a full day’s pay at their regular hourly rate.
Whereas OPSEU SEFPO believes in the importance of promoting equity in communities and workplaces across the province; and
Whereas members of OPSEU SEFPO’s equity committees and caucuses are responsible for carrying out this work;
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU SEFPO provide orientation for all members of its equity committees and caucuses including their alternates, where applicable, so that they have a better understanding of their roles, responsibilities and expectations; and
Be it further resolved that this training also include a component where these members can learn about equity issues within the workplace and society and that the training materials be developed by the Equity Unit in conjunction with the equity committees and caucuses
Be it further resolved that the orientation materials be developed by the Gathering in 2023
Whereas The COVID-19 crisis has exposed long-term care as a system in crisis; and
Whereas nearly 4,000 long-term care residents have died so far during the pandemic, a death-toll so high that OPSEU/SEFPO President Warren (Smokey) Thomas has demanded a police investigation; and
Whereas for-profit long-term care homes had four times more deaths than publicly- operated homes during the first wave of the pandemic, and given the deplorable conditions in these homes, often stemming from crisis-level understaffing and corner- cutting; and
Whereas the ongoing staffing crisis in long-term care has been worsened because workers are underpaid, overworked and being exposed to greater risks than ever, causing many staff, including PSWs, to abandon their jobs; and
Whereas and a significant portion of the workforce is part-time, forcing staff to work in several locations to earn a living income, which can inadvertently spread viruses and infections; and
Whereas long-term care home inspections have deteriorated over the past two decades, and following the recommendations of Ontario’s Long-Term Care Commission, the Ford government has committed to hire inspectors and return to annual inspections.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO vigorously demand that the Ontario government declare a moratorium on new for-profit long term care homes and immediately begin the process of bringing all current for-profit homes under public ownership and management; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO continues to call on the Ontario government to task Community Colleges to develop an accelerated and fully credentialed PSW training program in order to address the crisis-level staffing shortages in long term care; and
Be it further resolved that OSPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to offer students and/or public colleges financial assistance to ensure students can enroll in the accelerated PSW program tuition-free; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to legislate staff-to-resident ratios; 4 hours of hands-on care per resident, per day averaged by facility and not by region or province; increased wages and benefits for all long-term care workers and the creation of more full-time, permanent jobs.
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO commit to holding the government to account for its commitment to hire enough inspectors to do both proactive, comprehensive annual inspections and reactive inspections in response to complaints and critical incidents, and to ensure that inspectors are empowered to impose meaningful penalties on homes that break the rules.
Whereas The COVID-19 pandemic has confirmed the need for increased investment and long-term planning in our public health care system; and
Whereas decades of underinvestment and cuts to health care have now placed our hospitals and our entire health care system in crisis; and
Whereas Ontario is the most populous province in Canada, yet according to the Canadian Institute of Health Information (CIHI) was projected to be the least-funded province respect to healthcare per capita in 2021; and
Whereas the crisis of “hallway health care” and massive waitlists continue to get worse as elective surgeries and non-essential medical procedures are postponed due to the pandemic; and
Whereas unanticipated pandemic-related service costs and steep reductions in non- Ministry revenues are the new realities health care settings are having to tackle while trying to care of patients; and
Whereas there have only been piecemeal investments in health care despite the need for long-term capacity planning and investment; and
Whereas in recent years, the Ford government has leaned more heavily on outsourcing testing, medical procedures, and outpatient services to private independent heath facilities specifically private labs and this has been worsened by the pandemic; and
Whereas the damage being done by underinvestment is clear including:
- Ongoing “hallway health care” capacity issues in Ontario hospitals
- Supply chain issues regarding Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), quality, quantities, and appropriate access to it
- Insufficient training, recruitment and retention of medical staff in a variety of fields of medicine which is being compounded by the fact that 50 per cent of the current workforce is eligible to retire in the next five years
- Severe understaffing due to illness, burnout and staff leaving due to untenable circumstances, expectations and
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the provincial government to commit to global health funding increases of at least 5.5 per cent per year, and implement long-term planning to address the mental and physical burnout of frontline health care staff, and establish a third-party organization that collects data to help decision-makers track how many health care workers will be retiring and how many positions will need to be filled over the next five to ten years; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO demand that the provincial government establish a committee, that includes health professionals, to outline a proper health human resources strategy that addresses these shortages of health care professionals, and making medical professions more attractive – for those just starting their careers and for existing hospital professionals looking for a career change, in order to ensure
that Ontario’s health care system is strong enough to care for Ontarians throughout the pandemic and beyond; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to encourage and fund more full-time, permanent positions to ensure that health care workers are not forced to take on multiple jobs just to make ends meet, and to fill gaps caused by staffing shortages; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to commit to following the recommendations from the SARS Commission and numerous other reports that recommend better protections for workers.
Whereas The COVID-19 crisis has pushed our hospitals beyond the breaking point, unable to deal with surges and outbreaks; and
Whereas decades of underinvestment, amalgamations and privatization forced such deep hospital cuts and closures, they were already reaching the breaking point long before the pandemic; and
Whereas decades of underinvestment have also caused severe staffing shortages, which are now being exacerbated by illness due to outbreaks, severe burnout and staff leaving the hospital sector; and
Whereas the remaining staff are reporting more shifts left unfilled than ever before, forcing them to work well beyond 12-hour shifts, double shifts, and more overtime than they can manage. Increasingly, staff are being redeployed to work in emergency departments, which are dealing with a massive influx of patients; and
Whereas it has been proven that public-private partnerships in hospitals, like the P3 deal at the Brampton Civic Hospital, lessens the quality of healthcare services and removes financial accountability, for double the cost to the taxpayer.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to increase base funding for hospitals by at least 5.5 per cent annually; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to build more publicly- run and properly funded hospitals to address the severe lack of capacity across Ontario,
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to develop a human health resources strategy to address the ongoing and worsening staff shortage crisis, create more full-time, permanent positions for hospital support workers and hospital professionals and ensure that all workers are provided appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) as recommended by the SARS Commission and numerous other reports; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on Ontario’s government to develop a proper contingency plan to deal with hospital outbreaks and improve surge capacity.
Whereas recruitment and retention of education workers has been an increasing issue that has worsened since the COVID-19 pandemic began; and
Whereas some school boards are hiring unqualified members from the community to work with Ontario’s most vulnerable students; and
Whereas the consequences resulting from depleted qualified casual educations workers lists include:
- Increased violent incidents in the classrooms due to a lack of qualified education workers to provide appropriate programming and support to vulnerable students,
- Increased injuries due to depleted supply lists and no available or unqualified casual/supply education workers when dealing with escalated students, physical transfers, and the like,
- Physical and mental burn out due to education workers filling in for multiple positions at once while attempting to meet the academic, behavioural, emotional and medical support that Ontario’s most vulnerable students
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to develop a province-wide recruitment plan for education workers to address the current staffing crisis; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to increase wages and benefits to both retain current education workers who are overworked and underpaid, and entice new, qualified education workers to apply to positions in Ontario’s public school system; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to create a post- secondary tuition reimbursement program to encourage students to enter the education field.
Whereas the Ministry of the Solicitor General is closing the Ontario Monitoring Centre and contracting out GPS monitoring of offenders in the community to a third-party vendor; and
Whereas there are serious implications for accountability, public safety and privacy when a non-government company is tasked with public safety and given access to sensitive data; and
Whereas the Ontario government previously experienced the dire consequences of privatizing correctional services when they contracted out the Central North Correctional
Centre in Penetanguishene to a private, for-profit company only to have to make it public again a few years later; and
Whereas Ontario’s correctional institutions and community corrections are both lacking a sufficient number of staff to provide adequate oversight and programming for offenders in institutions and to oversee offenders on parole in the community; and
Whereas the Ontario Public Service Corrections staff currently being hired are fixed- term staff rather than full-time, permanent staff; and
Whereas an increasing number of inmates in provincial correctional facilities experience mental health issues, which can pose risks to themselves and others when in crisis; and
Whereas Ontario’s correctional institutions do not currently have the capacity to meet the needs of inmates who experience mental health issues, resulting in the use of segregation to address those risks; and
Whereas correctional institutions and probation and parole offices were not stocked with proper PPE when the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020 and continue to lack supply of adequate PPE such as fit-tested N95 masks; and
Whereas Ontario’s correctional institutions have had numerous COVID-19 outbreaks and Ontario Public Service Corrections staff regularly come into contact with offenders who are not vaccinated and could potentially be COVID-19 positive; and
Whereas many older jails and rented probation and parole offices have very poor air quality and ventilation.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO demand that the Ontario government reverse course and have all monitoring of offenders in the community carried out by Ontario Public Service Correctional Workers instead of third-party vendors; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to make all new hires full-time, permanent positions rather than fixed-term positions; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to increase mental health services in correctional facilities;
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to re-open secure mental health facilities in order to decriminalize mental illness and provide placement for inmates in crisis to receive mental health treatment from trained, qualified staff; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to supply fit- tested N95 masks for all corrections staff and improve ventilation and air quality in correctional institutions and offices by installing HEPA filters and retrofitting buildings.
Whereas the Ford government continues to pursue its damaging agenda to privatize alcohol sales;
Whereas under the guise of the pandemic, the government has loosened the rules governing alcohol sales, massively expanded the number of private outlets where
alcohol is for retail sale, and slashed the wholesale discount rate at a cost to provincial revenues of at least $60 million annually;
Whereas thanks to the Ford government’s pro-privatization agenda, 7-Eleven is looking to open bars in its convenience stores thereby endangering the health and safety of children and communities;
Whereas the government has privatized many elements of alcohol distribution including e-commerce, Christmas specialty products; and the unloading, unpalletizing and re-work of product that used to go to LCBO warehouses;
Whereas the years-long effort by successive governments to diminish the important role of the LCBO in alcohol retailing and distribution has resulted in a serious recruitment and retention issue with the consequence that shifts are short-staffed on a regular basis;
Whereas research has shown conclusively that private alcohol sales leads to more alcohol-related harms; and
Whereas alcohol use costs Ontario $5.3 billion annually in health care, lost productivity and criminal justice costs; and
Whereas the LCBO has a long, proud history of responsible alcohol sales that limit harms; and
Whereas the LCBO returns all of its profits to the people of Ontario — $2.39 billion in 2020-21 — and cumulatively, more than $20 billion in the last decade; and
Whereas LCBO profits pay for vital public services that people depend on such as health care, schools and highways.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO demand that the Ford government immediately abandon plans to further privatize alcohol sales and distribution, and begin working on a plan to roll back the privatization that it has already allowed; and
Be it further resolved that that OPSEU/SEFPO do all it can to safeguard the role of the LCBO in protecting public health, raising revenues to help pay for public services, and maintaining decent jobs in our communities.
Whereas there is currently a hiring freeze across the Ontario Public Service (OPS) resulting in all new hires to be temporary, despite understaffing in many ministries having reached crisis levels; and
Whereas hiring workers solely on a temporary contract creates an unstable workforce and preventing the OPS to build capacity with employees who are committed to careers in public service; and
Whereas Ambulance dispatch centres run by the Ontario Public Service are experiencing understaffing and retention issues in Ambulance Communications Officer positions, largely due to the pay disparity between OPS Ambulance Communications Officers and comparable positions in other dispatch centres; and
Whereas many OPS Unified members have filed “special case” requests for higher compensation to address the significant gaps in compensation between their wages and comparable positions at other agencies, which continues to be rejected by the employer; and
Whereas low wages, the prevalence of part-time work, lack of pensions and poor benefit entitlements have created retention issues in the social services sector, with an increasing number of workers moving to higher-paid sectors in health and education;
Whereas publicly-funded programs, such as affordable child care, compassionate care and housing, and strong public services are proven to reduce inequality and boost the economy; and
Whereas Ontario’s public colleges have faced chronic underfunding for decades, resulting in an over-reliance on international student fees, which have been experiencing a steady decline in enrolment due to the COVID-19 pandemic; and
Whereas Ontario’s public college system is a valuable resource to rebuilding our economy and resolving the labour shortages and recruitment and retention crises plaguing our public sector; and
Whereas the COVID-19 pandemic brought to light the massive income inequality in our province, with the richest residents doubling their wealth and profiting from the pandemic while many racialized people, women, and the working class suffered.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to hire full-time, permanent staff in every government ministry, with a particular focus on ministries experiencing staffing crises; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to approve the special cases for increased pay for all OPS positions whose compensation has fallen far below comparable positions at other agencies, in order to address retention issues, workload issues, and fair wages for all OPS employees; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to put forward a comprehensive investment plan for building social infrastructure to support Ontarians; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to increase investment in our public colleges, and create a comprehensive, long-term strategy for strengthening Ontario’s post-secondary sector, to prepare workers for the jobs Ontario needs now and in the future; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the Ontario government to implement a wealth tax to resolve the glaring inequality that the pandemic brought to light, with a focus on directing those tax dollars to building and strengthening public sector services and programs.
Whereas the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects the right to free collective bargaining; and
Whereas Bill 124 contravenes the Charter by limiting annual wage increases in the public sector to just one per cent, which is less than the 2021 inflation rate of 3.4 per cent; and
Whereas Bill 124 is an especially egregious attack on the collective bargaining rights of women, since women make up a large majority of workers in the public sector; and
Whereas Bill 124 unfairly targets public sector workers, many of whom have been sacrificing their health and providing high-quality service under extraordinary circumstances on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic for the past two years; and
Whereas recruitment and retention is a major issue in many of our public services, Bill 124 exacerbates this problem at a time when it is urgent to ensure that Ontario’s public services can meet the ever-increasing demand for public services; and
Whereas public sector spending and wages did not cause Ontario’s so-called “financial crisis,” and cutting public sector wages will not solve it.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO continue to demand the immediate repeal of the 2019 Bill 124.
Whereas COVID-19 has threatened workplace health and safety for all frontline public service workers; and
Whereas OPSEU/SEFPO members have taken extra precautions in their workplaces to prevent the spread of COVID-19 but additional support from the government is necessary in the wake of new, highly transmissable variants; and
Whereas social distancing is not always possible for OPSEU/SEFPO members working with children, such as education workers or social services workers; and
Whereas the three paid sick days temporarily provided by the government until July 31, 2022 is not sufficient to cover the length of the isolation period required for COVID-19 illness;
Whereas the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act does not currently include COVID-19 as an occupational hazard, despite many frontline essential workers putting their health at risk every day.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO demand the Ontario government provide personal protective equipment (PPE) for all frontline workers that adequately protects them from highly transmissable COVID-19 variants; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO continue to call on the province to increase access to paid sick days for all workers, provided on a permanent basis; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to pass Bill 191 to amend the Workplace Health and Safety Insurance Act to include COVID-19 as an occupational hazard and cover essential workers who test positive for the illness; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO call on the province to pass Bill 194 to include residential care facilities and group homes in Schedule 1 of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act.
Whereas the federal government has committed to providing $30 billion for early learning and childcare election platform; and
Whereas the childcare sector has been badly hit by the pandemic with centres closing and childcare workers exhausted and stressed under the constant threat of COVID-19 outbreaks; and
Whereas OPSEU/SEFPO and its allies have repeatedly called for a publicly-funded childcare system that provides affordable fees for families; decent work and pay for educators; and enough public, non-profit spaces for all families that need them; and
Whereas Ontario has the most expensive childcare in Canada and is the only remaining province to not sign a deal with the federal government to-date; and
Whereas without a deal, fewer Ontario families will be able to access childcare, worsening the gap between the haves and have-nots;
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO continues to call for Ontario to sign on to a Canada-wide, $10-a-day regulated childcare program, to be fully implemented by 2026 with a 50 per cent reduction in average fees by the end of 2022; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO demands that the Ontario government commit to working with the federal government on childcare and not obstruct the implementation of a fully public provincial childcare program with quality standards and decent wages.
Whereas the Minister of Health made an announcement on Feb 1st, 2022 to allow Independent Health Facilities (IHFs) to operate as private hospitals to take on the province’s ever growing surgical backlog caused by restrictions due to the pandemic, and this was the second announcement made in an offhand manner to open up surgeries to private hospitals; and
Whereas these privatization schemes violate legislation that prohibits the use of private hospitals in Ontario; and
Whereas if allowed, these private hospitals would draw valuable health professionals away from public hospitals, further worsening staffing shortages in this province; and
Whereas IHFs would “skim the cream” by selecting the “easiest” and most lucrative patients (those most likely to have positive outcomes) and leaving all the highest cost, sickest patients and highest risk procedures to public hospitals; and
Whereas IHFs are not covered under the same regulations and quality regimes as public hospitals; and
Whereas these private facilities are notorious for charging user fees and even fees to allow queue-jumping – a dangerous deviation from the triage process in public hospitals, which ensures that the sickest get surgeries first; and
Whereas Ultimately, IHFs take beds away from public hospitals, since public hospitals must hold vacant beds should a patient from the IHF end up requiring one.
Therefore, be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO demand that the Ontario government stop any plans to invest in, or allow Independent Health Facilities (IHFs) to operate as private hospitals; and
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO continues to call on the government to focus on rebuilding public hospital capacity; by investing in beds and staffing, and providing staff fair compensation for their heroic efforts.
Whereas OPSEU is a member driven union, where the local union executives support the member through the grievance process and are tasked with being the first line of defense for all member issues; and
Whereas the process with dealing with especially complex grievances and/or sensitive member issues involves, where necessary, seeking assistance from OPSEU Grievance department; and
Whereas OPSEU already has the resources available such as WestlawNext to provide the assistance to the Local president, executive members and stewards to the most complex and challenging grievances;
Therefore be it be resolved that OPSEU supplies free access to WestlawNext to all local executives and stewards
Whereas single unit locals, composite Locals and multi-unit locals are not restricted to members in one location and may be comprised of members in multiple locations; and
Whereas the strength of the union is to have members feel a part of and be engaged with their Local and Local Executive; and
Whereas the total number of members is one complexity for book off purposes, another complexity is the locations of the local memberships.
Therefore be it resolved that where a Local has more than 150 members, and has two or more locations that the central union will pay member time off for the equivalent of one member in each local under the following provisions, until such time as employer paid time off is negotiated into the collective agreement(s) for that Local.
Where a local has up to 650 members, and more than 75% of those members are in the Local’s largest location – 25% of regular weekly hours
Where a local has up to 650 members, and more than 50%, but less than 75% of those members are in the Local’s largest location – 50% of regular weekly hours
Where a local has up to 650 members, and no more than 25% of those members work in any one location – 75% of regular weekly hours
Whereas communication between OPSEU SEFPO Equity Caucuses and Committees in the Regions is challenging, creating a lack of awareness and support of issues and concerns amongst these groups; and
Whereas people who require French language services are often racialized and from immigrant communities; and
Whereas a high percentage of women who seek assistance in shelters are lndigenous, persons with disabilities, persons with a mental health diagnosis and addictions or from other equity seeking groups; and
Whereas quarterly one-day cost-effective meetings that would include regional representation from each Equity group would enhance communication, engagement, and participation.
Whereas each meeting agenda could include items such as Equity campaigns and/or issues and how to better strategize together to ensure the mobilization of each other’s campaigns to build strength amongst one another; and
Whereas this will strengthen our ability to create inclusive, meaningful, and equitable change for OPSEU SEFPO and all its members.
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU SEFPO provides the necessary additional funding to support quarterly one-day regional Equity meetings; and
Therefore be it further resolved that the minutes of each regional equity meetings will be posted on the OPSEU SEFPO website via the Equity Unit’s page
Whereas more workplaces join OPSEU SEFPO yearly and demographic changes occur as membership increases, and
Whereas the Social Mapping Project was a groundbreaking demographic survey that reviewed OPSEU SEFPO’s membership systems and was the first of its kind within the Canadian Labour movement, and
Whereas this project has enabled OPSEU SEFPO to identify gaps and barriers in the Union and provide information necessary to ensure services meet the needs of all members, and
Whereas we need to accurately measure the gains we have made which need to be reflected in the Social Mapping survey data,
Therefore be it resolved that every 5 years beginning with the year 2024, OPSEU SEFPO will conduct a social mapping census of all OPSEU SEFPO members similar in fashion to how the previous surveys were constructed and implemented
Lobby / Campaigns
Whereas the COVID-19 pandemic has created a continuing public health and economic crisis for OPSEU members, other workers, our families and our communities; and
And whereas the COVID-19 pandemic has also driven a continuing crisis of residential evictions and homelessness that threatens tens of thousands of our neighbours – including OPSEU members and their families – across the province.
And whereas large corporations have cashed in on billions in government aid; many corporations have banked record profits; more than one million Ontario workers were laid off, terminated or had their hours cut in the first wave of the pandemic; and two years later thousands are still recovering financially from periods of unemployment or are still out of work, or working reduced hours;
And whereas during the first six months of the pandemic in 2020, the Ford government rushed the passage of Bill 184, which eliminated important protections for tenants, allows landlords to demand unrealistic repayment plans when tenants fall behind in their rent, and allows the Landlord and Tenant Board to grant eviction orders without a hearing;
And whereas the elimination of comprehensive rent controls by the Harris government in 1995, together with cuts to social assistance, and cuts to funding for public, co-op, not-for-profit and affordable housing by both federal and provincial governments have contributed to the current affordable housing crisis;
And whereas continuing in the residential real estate market and massive investments by real estate investment trusts, hedge funds, pension plans and other speculators has driven skyrocketing rents and real estate prices and a wave of “above guideline” rent increases, evictions and “reconvictions”;
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU calls on the Ontario Government to:
- institute an immediate ban on all residential evictions in Ontario during the continuing COVID-19 public health crisis, and for rental arrears incurred during the crisis;
- require all commercial landlords to negotiate reasonable rent repayment plans with any residential tenant that has fallen behind on their rent during the COVID- 19 public health crisis, and to require that such plans be reasonable considering the tenant’s ability manage their repayments, based on their financial circumstances.
- immediately repeal of Bill 184 and restore key protections for all Ontario tenants, including a ban on predatory repayment agreements and on evictions without a fair hearing, independent representation and due process; and
- immediately pass legislation introducing effective rent controls that expands the rent control regime to include all rental housing in Ontario and ensures rent controls continue to apply to vacant units and when a new tenant moves into an existing rental unit.
And be it further resolved that OPSEU calls on the Federal, Ontario and municipal governments take urgent to address the long-term crisis in affordable housing in Ontario by expanding funding for the construction and maintenance of sufficient affordable, not-for-profit, rent-geared-to-income, public and supportive housing to address the current crisis.
And be it further resolved that OPSEU will support ongoing campaigns by our labour and community allies, affordable housing and tenants’ rights organizations to achieve these goals.
Whereas the Ford Government is planning to give thousands of long-term care beds to for-profit Corporations for the next 30 years, allocating 30,436 beds and 30-year licenses;
– The Majority of these (16,304 beds) are in the process of being allocated to for- profit companies. Of those, 12,084, or three quarters, have gone to 10 large chain companies with terrible pandemic records and links to the Ontario Conservative party, and;
Whereas the Lancet in its World Report cited numbers that found, in Ontario a significant difference in death rates depending on types of homes, such that “in facilities with an outbreak, 6.5% of all residents in for-profit facilities died of covid-19, whereas 5.5% died in non-profit facilities and 1.7% in municipal homes”, and;
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO, work with the Ontario Health Coalition, OFL, CLC, NUPGE and other organization to fight the Ford Conservative government plan of expanded privatization of LTC in Ontario and expand the not for profit seniors care.
Be it further resolved that OPSEU/SEFPO work with the Ontario Health Coalition, OFL, CLC, NUPGE and other organizations to encourage the Ontario Government to support other models of care rather than institutionalization of our seniors, including expansion of home care and the development of smaller home like, facilities as an alternative
Whereas COVID 19 has shown us none of us are safe unless all of us are safe;
Whereas too many migrant and undocumented people were denied health care and adequate income support because they did not have full immigration status;
Whereas full immigration status would make it easier for migrants to join unions and participate in the movement for decent work;
Whereas migrants living in Canada must have the same rights and protections as workers with citizenship.
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU will dedicate itself to supporting the demand for full immigration status for all migrants and undocumented people now and in the future;
Therefore be it further resolved that OPSEU will support the organizing work of the Migrant Workers Alliance for Change, Justicia for Migrant Workers, the Migrant Rights Network, and other migrant-led organizations;
Therefore be it even further resolved that OPSEU commits itself to union education about the importance of full immigration status for all, drawing on the resources of migrant-led organizations; and provide financial support to migrant-led organizations.
Whereas COVID-19 has shown that frontline workers on farms and in grocery stores, in warehouses and transportation, and in hospitals and home care, are essential to the functioning of society;
Whereas the very workers who kept us fed, clothed, safe, clean, and cared-for are also underpaid; under-protected, and under-valued;
Whereas we know that union and non-union workers alike benefit by stronger labour standards including a $20 minimum wage; at least 10 permanent, employer-paid sick days with 14 more during pandemics; equal pay for part-time and full-time workers; stronger protections for gig workers and temp agency workers.
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU will work with Ontario Federation of Labour [OFL] affiliates and other unions to create decent work organizing committees and send representatives to Justice for workers provincial organizing meetings;
Therefore be it further resolved that OPSEU will work with OFL affiliates and other unions to encourage individual union members to become regular donors to this campaign.
Membership Activities / Services
Whereas many Locals, Equity Committees and Area Councils spend considerable time developing and moving Resolutions and Constitutional Amendments to be submitted to Convention; and
Whereas even in non-election years, very little Convention time has been spent debating and making decisions on Resolution and Constitutional Amendments; and
Whereas a catered dinner at the hotel for all delegates is too expensive;
Therefore be it resolved that all Convention awards except the Stanley Knowles Award, be scheduled for either the Thursday or Friday evening, beginning at least two hours after the close of Convention, so that delegates have had an opportunity to have dinner prior to reconvening.
Whereas OPSEU Locals sign members and collect personal data from our members and already have access to all personal information by the member; and
Whereas OPSEU has a central repository of member’s personal data within Unionware; and
Whereas OPSEU provides local President’s access to partial data through the web portal; and
Whereas OPSEU Local are charters of the Union an as such they are not separate entities under the Law; and
Whereas the employers are restricting access to communication tools with our members and it is more important than ever to be able to communicate effectively with our members;
Therefore be it resolved that in addition to the current information available to locals, the union provides the confidential and work email addresses of each member, and OPSEU member number, on Excel and Portal lists; and
Be it further resolved that the Union provides the Locals with a way to electronically download the Member Data in a sortable document format like Excel on demand in addition to the quarterly lists issued by the Regional Offices.
Whereas OPSEU and other Unions advocate for proportional representation in municipal, provincial, and federal elections; and
Whereas true democracy can only come out of a vote based on proportional representation; and
Whereas Doug Ford was elected to a majority government with less than 40% of the vote; and
Whereas proportional representation provides a system of true representation; and
Whereas proportional representation encourages collaboration between all parties;
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU strike a committee to bring forward and recommend Constitutional changes at Convention 2023, that provides for regional representation on the OPSEU executive board based on the number of members in good standing within the region, using the following formula:
1-9,999 members = 3 EBMs,
10,000 – 24,999 = 4 EBMs,
25,000 – 39,999= 5 EBMs,
Over 40,000 = 6 EBMs
Whereas OPSEU recognizes that rank and file activists give up considerable amounts of their free time to attend OPSEU functions to conduct the business of the union and spend considerable time away from family for this purpose; and
Whereas OPSEU recognizes that such business of the union travel is stressful enough without adding a layer of potential stress and wishes to provide our union members with the respect they deserve; and
Whereas OPSEU members who travel for OPSEU business to benefit our union should be treated with the respect and regard that they deserve, including privacy, a place for downtime away from others and the opportunity to relax without having to worry about the opinions, feelings, habits of a fellow activist; and
Whereas removing the shared room policy could protect the union from liability; and
Whereas we are in the middle of a global pandemic
Therefore be it resolved that the shared room policy be rescinded so that rank and file activists have a private room to retire to for breaks and in the evening.
Whereas family status is a protected ground of discrimination under the Ontario Human Rights Code; and
Whereas OPSEU SEFPO is a social justice union that encourages full and equal participation; and
Whereas families within OPSEU SEFPO have identified barriers to participation in their union as a result of having children; and
Whereas families have identified barriers and deficiencies within current OPSEU policies which have become a barrier to OPSEU SEFPO’s provision of safe and effective childcare.
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU SEFPO form an ad hoc committee comprised of one (1) board member, staff, OPSEU SEFPO childcare provider(s), and a minimum of four OPSEU SEFPO members who currently utilize OPSEU SEFPO childcare. The purpose of the committee will be to formulate a comprehensive policy on childcare and troubleshoot issues that target barriers to participation of OPSEU SEFPO members as well as ensuring safe, effective care for our children using OPSEU SEFPO childcare.
Therefore be it further resolved that this committee meet within 3 months of the resolution being passed
Therefore be it further resolved that the Committee report back to the Executive Board within one (1) year
Whereas in order to change governments and secure lasting improvements to employment standards and labour law, we need a strong workers’ movement that unites union members with community organizations and workers without unions;
Whereas many union members earn less than $20 per hour; face differential treatment because they work part-time; or do not have paid sick days;
Whereas all workers need just cause protection to make it easier to join unions and enforce their workplace rights without reprisals;
Whereas there is unprecedented support for decent wages, paid sick days, and better protections for all workers; and
Whereas the lead-up to June 2, 2022 election will be key to electing decent work champions.
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU will support the Ontario Federation of Labour to continue its partnership with the Workers’ Action Center in the Justice for workers: Decent Work For All campaign (formerly the Fight for $15 and Fairness); and
Therefore be it further resolved that OPSEU will commit itself to making decent work a central issue in the next Ontario Election.
Whereas the increasing frequency of record-setting heatwaves, wildfires, droughts, floods, and other extreme weather events and the growing evidence of accelerating economic, environmental and human costs all conclusively prove the global scientific consensus: that the human-caused climate crisis is real and urgent;
Whereas the Ontario Federation of Labour and the Canadian Labour Congress have supported the call for urgent action to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions through a fair and just transition for all with meaningful input from workers, our communities and the labour movement;
Whereas OPSEU members’ pension plans – including the OPSEU Pension Plan (OPTrust), the CAAT Pension Plan, HOOPP and OMERS (of which OPSEU is a sponsor) – have a fiduciary duty to invest in the best long-term interests of their active and retired members and other beneficiaries;
Whereas the climate crisis represents a significant and growing financial risk for pension plans and other investors in the short, medium and long term, and a growing threat to global economic stability;
Whereas the climate crisis presents an imminent risk to the lives, safety, and quality of life for current and future generations around the world;
Whereas Section 2 of the Paris Climate Agreement, which Canada has signed and legally ratified, includes the following goals:
1.a) Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change; and
2.c) Making finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development;
Whereas shifting capital away from high-risk, high-carbon assets to low risk, zero- carbon investments is widely recognized a responsible and profitable opportunity to grow pension wealth and reduce material financial risk;
Whereas OPSEU members expect their pension funds to be invested in a way that is consistent with the best available scientific evidence on the climate crisis, based on the precautionary principle of ‘do no harm,’ and a prudent, long-term investment strategy;
Whereas 69 major global pension funds and institutional investors, managing more than
$10 trillion (US) in assets and organized through the UN Net Zero Asset Owners Alliance, have committed to achieving a net-zero target for their total portfolios by 2050 (The Alliance includes Quebec’s $390 billion CDPQ and California’s $390 billion (US) state pension fund CALPERS, and other leading pension funds);
Whereas Climate Action 100+ – a major global investor initiative representing 575 corporations with assets of $54 trillion (US) – has also committed to net-zero by 2050.
Whereas the best available scientific evidence on the climate crisis shows that the vast majority of oil, gas and coal reserves must stay in the ground if the global temperature
increase is to be held to 1.5°C, while some already-operational fossil fuel production projects must be retired early; and
Whereas a key principle of socially responsible investing is the disclosure of relevant information regarding an organization’s financial holdings and operations so that investors and stakeholders can assess and track an organization’s financial risks related to environmental, social and governance issues, including the climate crisis.
Therefore be it resolved that OPSEU calls on the trustees and administrators of all pension plans in which its members participate, including OPTrust, the CAAT Pension Plan, HOOP, OMERS and other plans of which OPSEU is a sponsor, to:
- Formally commit to fully align its investment strategy with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
- Adopt the target of achieving net-zero emissions for their total fund portfolios by 2040, together with a commitment to achieve net-zero no later than 2050.
- Adopt an immediate investment screen on all new oil, gas and coal and related finance and investment.
- Adopt a clear and measurable timeline for eliminating current fossil fuel investments from the portfolio by 2030.
- Establish a timeline, including measurable interim targets, for seeking the long- term decarbonization of all other held assets, with the goal of achieving a net- zero carbon portfolio by 2040.
- Establish a policy of active and escalating climate-related engagement criteria designed to ensure owned companies adopt policies that:
-establish carbon-reduction timelines to achieve the zero-emissions target,
-link executive compensation to measurable emissions reduction goals, and
-prohibit participation or funding of lobbying and public relations activities that undermine net-zero targets or government climate policies designed to achieve them.
- Adopt clear and measurable goals for increasing the percentage of its portfolios to be invested in the renewable energy sector and other profitable climate solutions.
- Provide regular updates on the implementation of their polices and progress towards achieving their net zero targets, including regular public disclosure of all public and private market investments with a value of $25 million or more.
- A commitment to align its investments and portfolio companies with the UN Principles on Responsible Investment, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent.