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Big win for Western campus police

London – Members of the Campus Community Police Service at Western University have ratified a five-year deal that comes with significant pay hikes and improved language in the contract.

Under the terms of the agreement, the 10-member police service will see a two per cent wage increase in each year of the contract, retroactive to July 1, 2015.

Improvements to the collective agreement include:

  • doubling of the training officer premium from five to 10 per cent
  • stronger grievance language
  • a new mediation process
  • increased bankable overtime hours
  • new language on contracting-out
  • deletion of a letter of understanding that allowed officers to be temporarily assigned to the communications centre
  • new layoff and recall language that includes a 24-month recall period
  • a restructuring clause that requires management to consult the bargaining unit before any restructuring is implemented

“Despite management’s refusal to negotiate, we remained open to collective bargaining,” said OPSEU Local 102 president Julie McGuffin. “And that’s a good thing, because suddenly they were ready to talk. I think they underestimated our resolve and the backing we had from the community.”

An information rally for the special constables on May 13 was attended by the presidents of the university and staff associations, as well as local New Democratic MPP Teresa Armstrong. It also attracted a large media and police presence.

“The rally opened management’s eyes,” said McGuffin. “With so many on our side, they couldn’t afford to keep playing hardball. They had to bargain in good faith. And we negotiated a great deal.”

OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas said he was very pleased with both the vote and the contract. “These dedicated professionals didn’t flinch in the face of intimidation. Instead, they galvanized community support and presented a united, resolute front.

“This is a small but mighty police service that never wavered in its integrity and professionalism. I commend them for their principled stand and congratulate them on a great new contract.”

For more information: Julie McGuffin, 519-859-9102