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LockTalk 20: Mediation turns to arbitration

Second day of mediation now completed

In our last edition of LockTalk, published in June, we spoke of our first day of mediation. Our second day of mediation took place on November 1.

Click here to download LockTalk, Issue 20

As members may recall, William Kaplan was agreed upon as the mediator/arbitrator for this round of bargaining.

Our sessions with Mr. Kaplan have revolved around each party’s submissions in an attempt to find common ground towards an agreement.

Arbitration to begin

Unfortunately, mediation has not resulted in an agreement. Consequently, March 30 and 31, 2019, have been set aside for arbitration. Your bargaining team proposed earlier dates, but the employer was not available before then.

The mediation mechanism is still in place, and we remain open to, and available for, this possibility. We will continue to participate in mediation sessions, should they become available.

Please be reminded that subsection 29.4(2) of the Crown Employees Collective Bargaining Act stipulates: “The method of arbitration shall be mediation-arbitration.” In other words, mediation must be part of the arbitration process.

We have a new negotiator

Your team would like to recognize Gissel Yanez for her hard work, diligence and skill during this round of bargaining. Gissel is taking parental leave, and we welcome to the team Anastasios Zafiriadis as the new OPSEU negotiator.

Thank you for your patience

We recognize that some members are growing frustrated with the amount of time the bargaining process is taking. However, we are involved in an established process and have engaged a well-respected labour lawyer, as well as a highly sought-after arbitrator, each with full schedules well into 2019-20. We chose the route of dispute resolution, and so we must do our best to accept this reality.

We remember…and give thanks

As Remembrance Day approaches, which this year marks exactly a century since the end of the Great War, your bargaining team wishes to express its gratitude for the countless sacrifices that Canadians made – on the battle front and the home front – to resist tyranny and secure the rights, freedoms and opportunities we enjoy today. We also express our solidarity with Canadian Armed Forces personnel here and overseas, and in a special way, with the families who mourn the loss of loved ones. Though many have died, our gratitude is undying.