News - Announcements

Memorandum of settlement clarifies OPS salary progression

Publication Date

Thursday, July 20, 2017 - 3:45pm

On May 24, 2017, OPSEU and the Ontario government signed a memorandum of settlement (MoS) related to a policy grievance that a number of OPS employees had made regarding their progression through the salary grid.

In the current OPS collective agreement (effective January 1, 2015, to December 31, 2017), there is a salary progression schedule freeze at Appendix UN 8 and Appendix COR38. As such, a wage freeze went into effect on January 1, 2016.

On May 26, 2016, arbitrator Kevin Burkett confirmed that the freeze affected all OPS members starting January 1, 2016.

Consequently, any members who received salary progression after January 1, 2016, had their wages adjusted accordingly and were required to repay any overpayments the employer had made.

This policy grievance affects any members who earned a wage progression before the freeze came into effect, but whose progression was administered after January 1, 2016. In such cases, employees did not receive the salary progression they had earned in 2015.

In other words, the employer failed to implement salary progression once employees had completed a minimum of 1,725.5 straight-time hours or 1,904 straight-time hours (as applicable) before the salary freeze went into effect on January 1, 2016.

The MoS captures members in the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services and the Ministry of Children and Youth Services.

The employer is to provide the union with a list of all members who were subject to the recovery of overpaid wages (“the clawback”) within 21 calendar days, which is July 21, 2017.

Within 120 calendar days, the union is to identify and provide the employer with a list of all employees whose merit date fell before January 1, 2016, and whose clawback was not done according to the Burkett award.

On this list, the employer will identify for the union those members whose clawback is not in dispute between the parties. The employer will reimburse those members.

If the union fails to provide the employer with any names that are in dispute within the 120-day period, the union agrees to withdraw its grievance.

Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services and Ministry of Children and Youth Services
As represented by the Crown in Right of Ontario (EMPLOYER)

WHEREAS the Union filed a policy grievance and a number of individual grievances alleging violation of Articles 2, 31A.2.2 and 31A.2.3, of the collective agreement between the Employer and the Union;

AND WHEREAS, the Parties attended at the Grievance Settlement Board on March 14, 2017 to address the claims;

AND WHEREAS, the Vice-Chair heard the representations of the Parties and reviewed documents associated with the claim and thereafter made a recommendation to the Parties that he believed to be a fair and reasonable resolution to the claims;

AND WHEREAS these grievances are listed in Appendix A, attached to the settlement;

AND WHEREAS the Parties wish to fully and finally resolve the grievances listed in Appendix A to each party's satisfaction;

AND WHEREAS the Parties agree to an interim settlement on the following terms, without prejudice or precedent to any other matter or any objections either party may raise should this interim settlement not result in a full and final resolution of the grievances:

  1. The Parties agree that the Employer will provide to the Union a list of all employees who were subject to recovery of overpaid wages ("the Clawback") pursuant to the award by Arbitrator Burkett, dated May 26, 2016 within twenty-one (21) calendar days of the signing of this interim Settlement.
  2. The Union shall identify and provide, to the best of its ability, a merit date prior to January 1, 2016 for all employees for whom the Union  takes  the position· that the Clawback was not done in accordance with the Burkett award, and an explanation as to why that is the case. Specifically, the list shall be those employees who the Union is alleging that their merit date occurred prior to January 1, 2016 and did not receive a merit increase pursuant to the terms of the collective agreement or any other applicable policy. This list shall be provided to the Employer within one hundred and twenty (120) calendar days of the interim Settlement.
  3. If the Union cannot identify a specific merit date prior to January 1, 2016 but nonetheless believes that any further Employee's merit date was incorrectly calculated, it shall, in addition to the list identified at paragraph 2, provide an explanation to the Employer as to why the Union believes that to be the case.
  4. After providing the information identified in paragraphs 2 and 3, the Union reserves its right to request disclosure from the Employer to assist in its determination of the merit date of Employees whose specific merit date is not identified but remains in dispute.
  5. In cases where there is no dispute between the Parties as to whether an employee should be reimbursed for the Clawback, the Employer will identify such employees lo the Union on the above-noted list and reimburse those employees.
  6. Upon confirmation that the reimbursement was appropriate pursuant to paragraph 5, in cases where there was an individual grievance filed, the Union agrees the respective individual grievance is fully and finally resolved and to withdraw the individual grievances listed in Appendix A without prejudice and precedent to any other matter between the parties.
  7. The Employer will make best efforts to reimburse the employees referenced in paragraph 5 within sixty (60) days of the agreement of their eligibility.
  8. The Parties agree that this interim Settlement is without prejudice and precedent to any position they may take on this matter at any future time, or any other matter before the Board. This includes any preliminary objections that may be raised and the ability for the Employer to dispute any position the Union may take on the merits, including but not limited to with respect to any individual identified pursuant to paragraphs 2 or 3 or the calculation of merit dates.
  9. The Parties agree that If the Union does not identify any names that are in dispute, pursuant to paragraphs  2 and 3, within one hundred and twenty days (120) days, the Union will withdraw the Union grievance and this interim settlement becomes a full and final settlement.
  10. The Parties agree this memorandum of settlement does not alter or change the entitlements or administration of salary progression or merit increases, as outlined In the collective agreement or any other applicable policy.
  11. The Parties agree that If this interim settlement becomes a full and final settlement, It constitutes the entire agreement between the Parties and supersedes any and all prior oral or written agreements, arrangements or understandings between the Parties In relation to the above noted grievances.
  12. For clarity the aforementioned process and this interim settlement, and full and final settlement, if it arises, is only applicable to the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services and the Ministry of Children and Youth Services and no other Ministry.
  13. The Parties agree that the grievances with GSB numbers 2016-1791; 2016- 1920 and 2016-1921 are all to be consolidated with  GSB# 2016-1893 (OPSEU# 2016-0999-0072).
  14. The Parties agree that Vice-Chair Dissanayake shall remain seized of any dispute between the Parties with respect to the implementation and interpretation of this settlement.

Dated in Toronto this 24th day of May 2017.

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