Tag Archives: travail hybride

Treasury Board’s hybrid work plan: Filing individual grievances

Photo of CIU flag

Earlier this year, PSAC filed policy grievances with Treasury Board and federal agencies (including CBSA), further challenging the employer’s decision to impose its flawed hybrid work model on federal public service workers in the midst of collective bargaining negotiations.

At the same time, PSAC also encouraged members who were negatively impacted by the employer’s policy to file individual grievances, especially in circumstances not covered by the policy grievance. The following seeks to provide further guidance for members who wish to file an individual grievance — and clarify when this may not be necessary.

Denial of accommodation requests

Members who have been negatively impacted by the employer’s hybrid work plan with regards to a protected human rights ground — such as family status (including child or elder care responsibilities), or medical disability — should request to be accommodated under the employer’s duty to accommodate policy. Members who see their accommodation request denied would then be in a position to grieve per article 19 of the collective agreement and should consult with their local CIU representative. As with any other duty to accommodate grievance, appropriate documentation and evidence will be required through the duty to accommodate process.


Members who were expressly told or were given assurances by management that their telework arrangement would be permanent, and who are now being ordered to report to the office, should consider filing a grievance on misrepresentation.

Example of grievance language to consider: The employer promised that my position would be conducted exclusively and permanently through telework. I relied on that promise to my detriment. I grieve that the employer is now ordering me to attend at a physical work location, in contravention of the promise that was made to me with regard to my working conditions.

Grievance language should be tailored to specific situations, and members should first speak with their local CIU representative.

Poor policy implementation

In situations where the employer orders employees to report to the office but does so without proper rationale or in a way that contravenes Treasury Board’s own directive, members may be in a position to grieve. Situations to consider include:

  • Failure to provide operational requirements supporting the need for in-person attendance.
  • Insufficient justification for asking an employee to report to a specific work location.
  • Singling out an employee to report to the office on a weekly basis.

Grievances in this category will vary greatly and will require detailed explanation as to why the employer is thought to be in error. Examples of grievance language to consider include I was not provided with the rationale for attending two days a week or I am the only member of my team who is required to attend on a weekly basis, but this will need to be supported by specific facts.

At the end of the day, these grievances need to focus on how the policy was implemented (and the resulting negative impacts) as opposed to grieving the hybrid work model itself, and members should consult their local CIU representatives.

When not to file

Outside of the circumstances listed above — denial of accommodation requests, misrepresentation, and poor policy implementation — individual grievances will most likely be redundant and are not recommended. The policy grievance filed by PSAC on behalf of our members (along with the earlier statutory freeze complaint) already covers the policy itself, the decision to order employees to report to work in person, and the implementation of the policy during bargaining.

It’s clear that the poorly thought out, one-size-fits-all approach favoured by Treasury Board, along with the general lack of consideration for work-life balance we’ve come to expect from CBSA, has proven to be highly frustrating for our members. That’s why CIU and PSAC are also pushing for better protections and improved telework language as part of ongoing bargaining efforts.

As always, we will keep you informed of any movement on this matter. Should members have any questions, they should reach out to their local CIU representative or Branch President.

PSAC files policy grievances over government’s flawed hybrid work plan


PSAC has filed policy grievances against Treasury Board and agencies for unilaterally imposing changes to our members’ working conditions while we’re in negotiations for 165,000 federal public service workers.

Guidelines for those impacted to file individual grievances are also now available.
The grievances follow PSAC’s statutory freeze complaints filed to halt the government’s hybrid work plan first announced in December.

PSAC’s grievances argue that the policy contravenes important articles of the collective agreement, as well as the health and safety provisions of the Canada Labour Code, and the Canadian Human Rights Act.

We are demanding that the government: 

  • Immediately rescind its hybrid work policy;
  • Immediately engage in joint consultation with the union on the return to workplace issue;
  • Identify all potential instances of discrimination that may impact members as a result of returning to the workplace for the union to review duty to accommodate, as per Article 16 of the collective agreement and relevant provisions of the Canadian Human Rights Act; and
  • Provide damages for any losses that might have resulted from the policy.

Filing a grievance  

PSAC encourages members to file an individual grievance if they believe the policy has been unfairly applied to them. The deadline for filing an individual grievance is 25 business days from the date that the policy is implemented in your workplace.

Filing a grievance is an important procedural step that protects your right to have the dispute resolved by the Federal Public Service Labour Relations and Employment Board. It also means the employer must meet with you and your union representative, listen to the problems you are having because of the hybrid work policy, and provide a formal response about what they are doing to correct it.

It is important to carefully document the return to workplace problems you are having. To file a grievance, contact your steward, a member of your union local executive, or your component labour relations officer as soon as possible.
We especially encourage members experiencing serious impacts due to the government’s policy to file grievances in order to protect their rights.

If you have incurred expenses and financial losses as a result of the return to workplace policy, be sure to identify these damages to your union representative.

For more information, reach out to your component labour relations officer.  

This article was first posted on the PSAC website.

Government must stop flawed hybrid work plan for federal public service workers


Despite a week of denials, Treasury Board announced today it would unilaterally impose a restrictive hybrid work policy for all federal public service workers in the core administration.

This blanket policy mandates workers to come into the office 2-3 days per week, or 40-60% of their regular working hours; regardless of the operational requirements of their job.

The policy comes into effect January 16, 2023, and will be fully implemented by March 31. Agencies and separate employers have been urged to put in place similar policies.

The government’s decision doesn’t have the best interest of workers at heart and is completely at odds with the direction the government has been moving towards for remote work.

It’s unacceptable that right before the holidays, workers will be scrambling to make new arrangements for child care, transportation, and possibly relocating if they’ve been hired remotely and are now being asked to come into the office.

We demand that the government halt their plan. PSAC is reviewing all our options in response to this announcement, and will take the necessary steps to protect our members’ ability to work remotely.

Federal public service workers have proven they can deliver the services Canadians depend on, whether working remotely or in the office.

Remote work must be negotiated at the bargaining table 

Remote work is a key issue at the bargaining table for PSAC’s 165,000 federal workers this round of bargaining, and unilaterally changing the terms and conditions of our members’ employment during negotiations is an egregious violation of workers’ collective bargaining rights.

The lack of clarity around the policy raises more questions than answers, and PSAC does not have confidence the government can put in place the health and safety requirements and the necessary tools for all federal public service workers to return to the office in the new year.

Members who have already returned to the office have told us they’ve come into the office without desks or chairs available for them, or returned to empty buildings to spend the entire day on video calls with colleagues working elsewhere.

We will continue to provide updates to PSAC members as we fight to protect our members’ rights.

This article was first posted on the PSAC website.