On May 27th, the Central/Unified teams filed a dispute with the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB). At issue was the Employer’s refusal to provide your teams with the timely and accurate information we require to negotiate an essential/emergency service agreement for each worksite. Having an accurate picture of the reality of the job, the workers and their working conditions is key for us to make informed decisions when negotiating these agreements.
During a marathon session on June 22nd with the OLRB, representatives from the Central/Unified EESA tables argued the issues and hammered out a Memorandum of Settlement that will set the expectations for employer disclosure going forward. The MoS also sets out the process and timelines that the employer must follow with regards to providing disclosure to the Union.
This settlement is in line with the previous settlement achieved by Corrections on the same issue. It is disappointing that the employer compelled the Union to file another application before the OLRB by refusing to provide a consistent level of disclosure after the Corrections MoS. Unfortunately, this level of disrespect has been the norm in both issues bargaining and EESA negotiations.
We continue to do our due diligence to verify that the information provided by the employer is a current and accurate representation of each worksite. One of the ways we do this is to draw on local expertise, such as a local president or someone that works directly in that field, to assist us in ensuring that any agreements enable us to mount an effective strike, if necessary.
The quality of these agreements is extremely important because if there is a labour disruption, it has to matter or we will be on the streets for a long time.
Please continue to mobilize around the issues and send a strong message to the politicians that we will not back down. Our work is important and we demand a fair contract.
Related: OPS Bargaining 2014 Index Page