Full-Time College Support Staff Reach Tentative Agreement – Detailed Breakdown

CAAT-S FT support4success

Printable PDF

OPSEU/SEFPO Full-Time Support Staff at Ontario’s 24 public colleges have successfully negotiated a tentative 3-year collective agreement with the College Employer Council.

“The bargaining committee and I are excited to announce that we have successfully negotiated a tentative 3-year collective agreement. Despite our bargaining being significantly and unfairly restricted by Bill 124, we have still made some substantial gains in this round of negotiating. This agreement represents real gains in job security, job competitions, and benefits, and will provide real stability for our members. We are especially pleased about the considerable gains we’ve made in improving health benefits – the most significant improvements to our health benefits in the past 15 years.

“I am incredibly proud of our members. Their support throughout the bargaining process, and the support of OPSEU/SEFPO’s leaders and members province-wide, gave the bargaining team the energy and strength to achieve a strong contract. We encourage you to read through the details of the new agreement and contact us if you have any questions.” -Rasho Donchev, Bargaining Team Chair and President of Local 559

“I’m so proud of the bargaining team for the concrete improvements they’ve negotiated for their CAAT-S Full Time members. The increased benefits will markedly improve members’ health and well-being. Know that your union and your union leadership will continue to fight tirelessly against Bill 124 to end the Ford government’s unfair 1% cap on annual wage increases.” -JP Hornick, OPSEU/SEFPO President

“I’m so pleased with the support that CAAT-S Full Time members and all OPSEU/SEFPO members showed for the Bargaining Team. This kind of solidarity shows employers that we’re united behind the demands of our negotiators. The Blue for Bargaining campaign was a really inspiring way for members to show their support and build solidarity and strength in our union.” -Laurie Nancekivell, OPSEU/SEFPO First Vice-President/Treasurer


Detailed Breakdown

Union/Employer Relations

  • Job Competitions/Internal Hiring
    • A major shift to our job competition language is that Appendix D and Regular Part-Time employees will now be considered internal applicants. This represents an important gain in addressing inequities in the colleges’ hiring practices.
  • Equity, Diversity and Inclusion/Indigenization
    • We prioritized the introduction of language in the collective agreement to demonstrate meaningful commitments around Equity, Diversity and Inclusion as well as Indigenization.  Although what we would have preferred stronger language, we have created space for open dialogue about existing barriers faced by equity-deserving groups at the local level through discussions at the Union College/Campus Committees (UCC).
    • A reporting mechanism has also been introduced, which we anticipate will provide meaningful information back to the Employee Employer Relations Committee (EERC).
  • Gender-Neutral Language
    • Building on the work started at the EERC, this collective agreement will reflect a switch to gender-neutral language.
  • Workload and Overtime
    • Locals will now have the ability to discuss both workload and overtime issues at the UCC level.
  • Paybands
    • The Colleges have agreed to exploring options for expanding the paybands in the Job Evaluation Manual through discussions at the Joint Classification Committee (JCC).


  • Expansion of Bereavement Leave
    • We have expanded the bereavement leave benefit by adding the employee’s niece(s) or nephew(s) to the list of family members for whom members can apply for leave.  Given the switch to gender-neutral language in the collective agreement, the term used to reflect this additional benefit will be “the child of an employee’s sibling.”

Job Postings

  • Online Job Postings
    • The new agreement allows the colleges to post job vacancies exclusively in an online format. In addition, the colleges will now be permitted to post both internally and externally at same time, however, we were able to significantly strengthen the consideration language for internal applicants.
    • For job reversals and situations where a position becomes vacant again within 6 months, there will no longer be a need for the colleges to re-post the job vacancy, however, should the college choose not to re-post and to reconsider the initial list, internal applicants who were interviewed will be considered first.

Job Security

  • Benefits During the Layoff Notice Period
    • When a full time member is laid off they are entitled to 90 days notice. The new language ensures that members are entitled to benefits during the layoff notice period.
    • We have also secured a commitment to establish a shared definition of ‘familiarization period’ through a referral to the EERC.

Initiatives and Opportunities (I/O)

  • Incorporating I/O Positions
    • Initiatives and Opportunities (I/O) positions were negotiated in 2008 allowing colleges to create temporary positions to enable new initiatives. Since 2008, these positions were in the Collective Agreement as a letter of understanding. Letters of understanding need to be renewed each round of bargaining. This round of bargaining the I/O language was moved from the Letters of Understanding to Appendix K. This means that the I/O will not need to be renewed each round of bargaining.
  • I/O Language
    • Much of the language from the letter of understanding remains the same. I/Os are limited to 24 months in length. Members who take I/O positions can return to their regular positions when the position ends. The main difference is that when the college knows before the start of the position that it could be longer than 24 months, with the agreement of the local, the college can create a position that is longer than 24 months.


  • Paramedical Benefits
    • 90 days after ratification, our plan will now cover up to a combined maximum of $3000.00 per person in a Calendar Year at 85% for all eligible expenses. Effective September 1, 2024 paramedical services will be increased to cover up to 90% of the eligible expense.
  • Mental Health Benefits
    • A new Mental Health Service Benefit will be introduced on September 1, 2023. This will be separate and in addition to other paramedical services, up to a maximum of $1750.00 per person per year covered at 90% of eligible expense. In addition to the existing practitioners, we have also added family and marriage therapists as service providers under this plan.
  • Medical Cannabis
    • 90 days after ratification, Medical Cannabis will be introduced to our extended health insurance plan to cover up to $4000 per calendar year at 85%.  The medical cannabis must be prescribed by a licensed physician and must be pre-approved by Sunlife. In year 3, as of September 1, 2024, the extended health insurance plan will cover up to $5000.00 per calendar year at 85%.
  • Dental Benefits
    • 90 days after ratification, our dental plan will cover dental implants and dental appliances at 50% to a maximum $2500.00 per person per plan year.


  • Wage Increases
    • This contract was negotiated under the conditions imposed by the provincial government as set out in Bill 124. Bill 124 caps compensation increases at 1% per year for all public sector and broader public sector workers. We will receive the full 1% Wage increase year over year according to the following schedule;
      • September 1, 2022 – 1%
      • September 1, 2023 – 1%
      • September 1, 2024 – 1%
    • Challenges to Bill 124
      • OPSEU/SEFPO is challenging Bill 124 through all political and legal means available. OPSEU/SEFPO has applied for an exception to Bill 124 for our members. In case we are successful in our challenges or applications, a clause to reopen negotiations for wages was also negotiated by the bargaining team.

Health and Safety

  • Safety Equipment
    • In addition to the existing language assuring that colleges will provide necessary footwear and eye protection, colleges will also now provide additional safety equipment, as required by legislation for a member to perform their duties, at no cost to the member.
    • Any questions regarding the eligibility it will be resolved by the Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC) as constituted under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.


  • Additions to the list of arbitrators
    • The bargaining team was focused on creating more diversity among our Arbitrators in order to more accurately reflect our membership. We have agreed to add Jasbir Parmar, Johanne Cavé (bilingual) and André Durette (bilingual) to the list of Arbitrators.
    • The list of Mediators/Arbitrators under Article 18.4.2 has been updated to include Jasbir Parmar. Other Mediators/Arbitrators that were previously agreed to at the EERC are also being included. They are Daniel Randazzo, Sheri Price and Matthew Wilson.
    • The list of Arbitrators for expedited arbitrations under Article has been updated to include Johanne Cavé (bilingual), Daniel Randazzo and André Durette (bilingual). The list also includes Eli Gedalof who was previously added by the JCC.  All of the Arbitrators that hear expedited arbitrations must undergo jointly delivered training by the JCC on the job evaluation system and existing Arbitrators undergo reorientation to the job evaluation system every 2 years.

Remittance of Dues

  • Securing Members’ Private Information
    • Previously colleges were required to provide OPSEU/SEFPO with members’ SIN numbers. Colleges are no longer required to provide SIN numbers and will now use a unique identifier for each member. This change is to assist in securing members’ private information and limiting possible exposure of confidential information.

Union Negotiating Committee

  • Increased Time for Bargaining Team Members
    • Bargaining Team members will now have an additional 5 days of employer-paid time-off for collective agreement negotiations. This is an increase from 10 days to 15 days.