Tag Archives: conseil du trésor

TB bargaining: Ramp up the pressure by taking strike training

Icone discussion PSAC-AFPC

While PSAC attends mediation with Treasury Board and prepares to make our case at the Public Interest Commission hearings this fall, we’re escalating our pressure on the government by launching strike training for all members in the PA, SV, TC, and EB groups.

“We are preparing to fight for a fair contract if the government continues to ignore the plight of workers,” said PSAC National President Chris Aylward. “PSAC members across the country are taking strike training so that we’re ready for any possible outcome.”

As the cost of living remains at record highs for workers, Treasury Board has refused to meaningfully budge on a fair and reasonable wage offer that would prevent members from falling further behind. They’ve also dug in their heels and outright rejected our proposals on remote work and mandatory training on anti-oppression and discrimination.

Regional strike training preparation

Regional offices across the country are rolling out introductory strike training targeted at members working for Treasury Board. Contact your nearest PSAC regional office or visit your PSAC regional website for more information.

Training covers the collective bargaining process, key outstanding bargaining issues, the importance of mobilization on our bargaining power, the strike vote process, and more. The content is presented in various formats including a full day intensive training, a half-day overview, and a shorter introductory session. All general strike-related questions will be answered during the training.

Online strike training preparation

Education makes our union stronger. That’s why, in addition to in-person training, PSAC has developed an online strike preparation course that members can complete at their own pace.

The three-hour, self-led course will help Treasury Board members learn more about what strikes are, how they work, and where they fit in the bargaining process. Other topics covered include:

  • How strikes can make major gains for workers
  • PSAC strikes that our members won during the pandemic
  • The basic structure of strikes at PSAC
  • Strike logistics, including strike pay and essential services
  • What you can do right now to ensure we win

Enroll in online strike training today

When you finish the course, make sure to download your course certificate and tell your friends and colleagues about PSAC’s online education opportunities.

Frequently asked questions

PSAC has compiled a list of frequently asked questions about Treasury Board bargaining, mobilization, and strike votes.

This page will be updated as more information becomes available, so check back frequently.

Stay informed and engaged

Getting involved and taking action are key as we push for a fair contract. Be prepared, get mobilized, stay engaged, and be ready to take action:

Keep your contact information up to date to receive all the latest bargaining updates.

This article was first posted on the PSAC website.

Common issues: Facing record inflation, government’s latest wage offer still sets workers back

After two weeks of mediation at the Common Issues table, the federal government put forward a revised wage offer on the last day of talks that would still see more than 120,000 federal public service workers take what amounts to a significant pay cut in the face of record high inflation.

Mediation took place September 12-14 and 20-23 between PSAC’s Common Issues bargaining team and Treasury Board.

The revised offer of 1.5%, 3.0%, 2.0%, and 1.75% — averaging 2.06% per year over a four-year agreement — still falls well short of inflation and shows the government still has no real mandate to negotiate a reasonable contract with our members. The original offer of 1.5%, 2%, 1.75%, and 1.5% — averaging 1.7% per year — led PSAC to declare impasse in May.

As the cost of living continues to soar, PSAC members expect Treasury Board to come to the table with a fair contract that will protect workers’ buying power and prevent them from falling further behind. But this latest wage offer is just disrespectful and proves Treasury Board isn’t taking this seriously.

Treasury Board also dug in their heels and refused to meaningfully budge on any of the other key issues that matter most to members, including contracting out and better job security, equity in the workplace, and more work-life balance.

PSAC will now bring those issues to the forefront at Public Interest Commission hearings, to be scheduled this fall by the Federal Public Sector Labour Relations and Employment Board.

Meanwhile, dates have been set for mediation for the PA, SV, TC and EB groups.

  • PA: October 4-7
  • SV: October 11-14
  • TC: October 18-21
  • ​EB: October 25-27

If an agreement with the government following the Public Interest Commission process can’t be reached, PSAC members should be prepared to escalate their actions, up to and including taking strike action if necessary to reach a fair contract.

Stay informed and engaged

Getting involved and taking action are key as we push for a fair contract. Be prepared, get mobilized, stay engaged, and be ready to take action:

Keep your contact information up to date to receive all the latest bargaining updates.

This article was first posted on the PSAC website.

CIU funds top-up strike pay for its PA, SV, TC and EB members

At its September 2022 meeting, in Ottawa, the CIU National Board of Directors passed a motion to establish an additional strike fund to better support CIU PA, SV, TC and EB members during this current round of bargaining.

The fund would allow CIU members in good standing who are part of these groups, and who participate in strike activities, to access an additional $50 per strike day, on top of the existing $75/day provided by the Public Service Alliance of Canada.

This is similar to the additional strike pay that the 2021 CIU Triennial Convention had created for FB members for that table’s previous round of bargaining.

This decision by the CIU National Board of Directors comes as PA, SV, TC and EB members await the result of a Public Interest Commission, which could set the stage for possible strike action.

The CIU Board of Directors is hopeful that, should strike actions prove necessary, this display of solidarity across tables will help ensure that the membership is successful, that Treasury Board bargaining groups have the resources they need to win the fight for a fair agreement, and that the employer knows we’re ready to fight as one.

For any questions regarding this top-up strike pay, please contact your Branch President.

PA, TC, and EB members ratify new agreements with Treasury Board

Photo of CIU flag

A majority of PSAC members in the Program and Administrative (PA), Technical Services (TC), Education and Library Science (EB), and PSAC-UTE (CRA) bargaining units have voted in favour of their respective tentative agreements. The four units represent nearly 110,000 federal public service workers who have gone above and beyond to support Canadians during this pandemic.

The new collective agreements for the PA, TC and EB groups cover the 2018-2021 period, while the new PSAC-UTE collective agreement covers the 2016-2021 period. All agreements provide for fair wages, no concessions and improved working conditions.

“I am proud of the elected members of our bargaining teams for their unwavering dedication during this round of talks,” said Chris Aylward, PSAC National President. “Thanks to their hard work and the solidarity shown by thousands of members across the country, we were able to negotiate a fair deal. We’re now in a strong position to build on these improvements in the next round of bargaining.”

Next Steps

In the coming weeks, PSAC will meet with Treasury Board and CRA representatives to sign the new collective agreements. With the exception of monetary provisions, which are retroactive, new contract terms come into effect on the date of signing.

Both employers have 180 days from the signing of the contracts to implement wage increases, wage adjustments and allowances. As explained in the ratification kits, in view of this extended implementation timeline, PSAC negotiated a $500 lump sum payment into all contracts.

PSAC will update members when contracts are signed. Please keep your contact information up to date via the PSAC member portal.

SV group, Parks, CFIA and FB group

Members in the Operational Services (SV) group have until October 5 to vote on their new contract while those in the Parks and CFIA units will vote between October 5 and November 4.

Members in the Border Services (FB) unit are still in talks.

The original version of this article was first posted on the PSAC website.

Deal reached for Phoenix damages, PA group and common issues

Image conversation PSAC AFPC

In a victory for federal public service workers who have gone above and beyond to support Canadians during this pandemic, PSAC has reached a tentative agreement that provides fair wages, no concessions, and improved working conditions for the 70,000 members of the PA group, and Treasury Board common issues.

Alongside these successful talks, PSAC has also secured proper compensation for Phoenix damages to be paid to PSAC members for the pain and suffering caused by the broken pay system.

Phoenix damages

PSAC successfully negotiated a Phoenix damages settlement that is significantly better than the employer’s deal with other federal bargaining agents. Last year, PSAC rejected the government’s meagre offer of 5 days of cashable leave, which was too little and would have rewarded those who earn more while punishing workers who make less. The current agreement provides PSAC members with a fair and equitable lump sum payment of $2,500.

Unlike the tentative deal for Treasury Board bargaining that must be voted on by PSAC members in the near future, the Phoenix damages agreement required ratification by the PSAC National Board of Directors. The Board voted unanimously in favour of the offer on July 3, 2020.

Please read the following update which provides greater detail on the general Phoenix compensation portion of the settlement, as well as the expansion of the claims process for out-of-pocket expenses and for those who suffered major losses because of Phoenix.

PA Group settlement

The PSAC bargaining team successfully secured fair wage increases averaging at 2.11% per year.

PA group members would receive the following wage increases:

2018 2019 2020
2.8% 2.2% 1.35%

In addition to those wage increases, the following group-specific wage adjustments and allowances were also secured: ​

  • Improved retention allowance expanded for all employees working in compensation operations to $3,500 per year
  • A new $3,000 annual allowance for armed Fishery Officers
  • A new Primary Responsibility Allowance of $2,000 per year for parole officers and parole officer supervisors or Parole Officer Managers at Correctional Services Canada (CSC)

Other improvements to the PA collective agreement include: ​

  • Increase in maternity related reassignment or leave qualification from 52 to 78 weeks following the birth of a child
  • Several leave improvements including for a person who stands in place of a relative for:
    • Leave without pay for the care of the family
    • Bereavement leave
    • Leave with pay for family-related responsibilities
  • A new leave provision for members elected to union leadership
  • An increase in meal allowance for overtime from $10 to $12
  • New language to clarify that  the Employer shall provide an unpaid meal break of a minimum of thirty (30) minutes per full working day, normally at the mid-point of the working day
  • Renewal and update of a memorandum of understanding on a Joint Study on the Work Environment for Employees Working in Call Centres
  • New provision that provides call centre employees with training on crisis intervention and coping
  • Increases to funding for the Joint Learning Program, including a pilot study on health and safety training
  • Language that explicitly provides breaks for nursing employees (to nurse or express breast milk)
  • Memorandum of understanding for a Joint Study on employee support mechanisms for employees who in the course of their duties are exposed to explicit and disturbing material, and/or potentially threatening situations
  • Joint committee to review the use of Indigenous languages in the federal public service, examine Indigenous language skills in the performance of employee duties and consider the advantages that Indigenous language speakers bring to the public service
  • Memorandum of understanding regarding Occupational Group Structure (OGS) review

Common issues settlement

Alongside negotiations for the PA group, PSAC bargaining teams for the TC, EB and SV groups also joined talks to reach a settlement for Treasury Board issues common to all groups. Some of the key improvements include:

  • A one-time payment of $500 in recognition of the extended collective agreement implementation deadline and an additional $50 for every subsequent 90-day delay
  • 10 days of paid domestic violence leave
  • Better language on return to work following a maternity or parental leave, giving more flexibility to parents who wish to change positions within the federal public service.
  • Improvements to parental leave pay
    • Updated language to match the new legislation including a new extended leave option and the sharing of parental leave
    • Expanded supplementary allowance for every week an employee is on extended or shared parental leave
    • Additional weeks for parents covered under the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan, when both parents work in the public service.
  • New memorandum of understanding to explore the issues related to childcare in the public service
  • Updated and improved language to match the new legislation on compassionate care and caregiving leave
  • Better language to allow the use of employer facilities for union activities
  • New memorandum of understanding to protect certain working conditions of civilian members of the RCMP
  • New memorandum of understanding on mental health in the workplace to support the work of the Centre for Expertise on Mental Health
  • In the event of workforce adjustment, the education allowance has increased to $17,000
  • Deletion of Memorandum of Understanding on Supporting Employee Wellness. As a result, sick leave will remain untouched.

Full text and next steps

In the coming days when the final text and full details of the tentative agreement for the PA group and common issues are available, they will be shared with the membership. PA members will shortly thereafter be invited to participate in online ratification votes. Details about the votes will be shared as soon as possible.

The PSAC bargaining team unanimously recommends the ratification of the tentative agreement.

To ensure that you receive all updates and can participate in the ratification process, please ensure that you have either updated your contact information on PSAC’s member portal, or that you create an account if you have not done so already.

Other PSAC bargaining groups

Bargaining dates for the SV group will be announced in the weeks to come. Negotiations for the EB, TC and Canada Revenue Agency groups will resume next week.

The original version of this article was first posted on the PSAC website.