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Table Talk Update 4 – December 14, 2012 A message from your Bargaining Teams

The latest bargaining and mobilizing news for OPS members

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A message from your Central/Unified team

Today we have found out that the employer has shared a letter with some of you that was sent to OPSEU President Smokey Thomas.

In this letter, the employer has requested the appointment of a conciliator officer. This is a normal part of the bargaining process in an effort to obtain a collective agreement. Filing for conciliation usually occurs at the start of the process, when notice to bargain is served.

We had asked the employer to start meeting at the table on November 13, 2012 instead of the planned date of November 5 as we needed to ensure that we had our document ready to present all your demands.

We are still engaged with the employer to try to reach a fair deal for all our members.

We encourage you to keep showing your support for the bargaining team, through the wearing of buttons, placement of posters and stickers and the organizing of rallies and events at your place of work. Contact your regional mobilizer for assistance in planning and any upcoming events in your area.

Do not buy into the employers’ lies and deception tactics.

In Solidarity,
The OPS Central/Unified Bargaining Team

A message from your Corrections Team

On October 5, 2012, the employer served us notice to bargain. Since we first met with the employer on Nov. 14 that is exactly what we have been doing.

On Dec. 11, the government served us notice they were filing for conciliation, despite the fact that we are not at an impasse. Conciliation is when a mediator comes to the bargaining table to try and move both sides to an agreement. We are not sure why they are filing since we have been meeting regularly with them and have even reached some agreements. They have also advised that they intend to commence Essential and Emergency Services negotiations on Jan. 2, 2013.

However, after tabling a “takeaway” document on Dec. 11 the employer advised us that we had to withdraw all union proposals that they have not responded to and only talk about their items. The numerous items the employer is refusing to look at are of great importance to our bargaining unit, dealing with the chronic and systemic health and safety issues that affect our members. Our full tabled document is on the website, as well as the employer’s document. Corrections Union Position November 14 Corrections Employer Position November 14   Employer Request for Conciliation

So how can we bargain if they won’t discuss any of our issues? This just proves that the Liberals don’t want us to bargain an agreement…they want to impose a contract..

What happens at the table now? A mediator will come to the bargaining centre and work with the parties and attempt to facilitate an agreement on outstanding bargaining issues.

On Nov. 14 the employer raised the issue of a “Corrections Only” collective agreement. In a flippant manner, the employer said that since Corrections had tabled so many Central-related items that perhaps we should have our own separate collective agreement. On Dec. 6, while exchanging documents, the employer asked if we were interested in having our own collective agreement. The union responded that before discussing such a significant issue, we needed to see their proposal in writing in order to assess legalities, practicalities and, of course, the price tag.

On Dec. 11 the employer handed us their proposal, and advised us that if we want our own agreement we had to withdraw all of our remaining proposals and accept substantial takeaways. This position is not acceptable to the bargaining team and we are seeking legal advice. Corrections employer Letter – Separate Collective Agreement  Corrections Union Response – Separate Collective Agreement  

The goal of your Corrections Team remains as it was before. We are committed to negotiating a fair and equitable contract and will continue to fight for the members.

In Solidarity
The OPS Corrections Bargaining Team

Contact us:

Central/Unified Team
Twitter: @OPSCentralTeam

Corrections Team
Twitter: @DanSidsworth

Don’t listen to rumours! TableTalk Update is your only official communication from the OPS Bargaining Teams.

Your OPS Bargaining teams

Central/Unified Team

Roxanne Barnes, Chair  CERC
Ron Langer, Vice-Chair Region 1
Elaine Young, Region 2
Tammy Carson, Region 3
Daryl O’Grady, Region 4
Edie Strachan, Region 5
Pierre Verhelst, Region 6
John Watson, Region 7
Len Elliott, Administration
Barb Friday, Corrections
Cindy Falcao, Institutional and Health Care
Betty Marchegiano, Office Administration
Shelley McCormick, Office Administration
Cam Jay, Operational & Maintenance/Technical
Jeff Weston, Fixed Term
Ruth Hamilton, Staff Negotiator

Corrections Team

Trish Goden, Region 1
Dan Sidsworth, Chair  Region 2
Glenna Caldwell, Vice-Chair   Region 3
Brian Dunham, Region 4
Monte Vieselmeyer, Region 5
Jim Mitchell, Region 6
Greg Arnold, Region 7
Rob Field, Staff Negotiator

Original authorized for distribution:

Roxanne Barnes, Chair  Central/Unified Team
Dan Sidsworth, Chair  Corrections Team
Warren (Smokey) Thomas, President  Ontario Public Service Employees Union