PPO3 Grievance: In 2009 Vice-Chair Herlich agreed with our position on the PPO3 issue and ordered the employer to negotiate settlement with the union. The employer instead asked for a judicial review of the decision. The hearing was held on April 23rd, 2010. The arguments are being weighed and we will report on the outcome as soon as we receive word.
Ministry File Review Committee (Grievance pilot project) Appendix 41 in our collective agreement provided for the development of a pilot project creating six Ministry File Review Committees (MFRCs). These committees have the purpose of reviewing grievances that have been referred to the GSB. The committee is comprised of three union and three management representatives who attempt to find effective and expeditious resolutions at the Ministry level. For lack of better explanation, the MFRC can be considered a “Stage 2.5” in the grievance procedure. The committee has been meeting since January and progress has been rather slow as the parties work out the process. We are hopeful that better results will start to percolate from this committee in the near future.
Accommodations in P&P: People with injury, illness or disabilities have been experiencing difficulties trying to get an appropriate accommodation from the employer. Those with accommodations find issues where their accommodations are being challenged by the employer. A working group has commenced with the objective to review accommodation practices in Community Corrections and develop some guidelines on how the employer can best meet their duty to accommodate employees in P&P offices.
Staffing, Hiring & Lateral Transfers: The economic climate has lead to drastic measures by the employer especially in the area of staffing. MGS has ordered a zero per cent increase in FTEs for all Ministries. That has repercussions in our offices when short term unexpected leaves or recurring short term leaves happen. The employer has been reluctant to backfill any of these leaves. To approve the backfill for leaves, a compelling business case must be submitted by your area managers. That includes detailing all of the circumstances of the office, IE how many staff are new and require training (these leaves create office pressures), how many are on accommodation, are there higher than average PSR demands, what demands create pressures and what impact failing to replace staff will cause. In the cases where backfill has been denied, the AMs have likely done poor business cases that basically just stated the details of the leave and the request for staff. When you are aware of a potential leave or backfill situation, stewards or staff should be approaching the area manager to discuss the office dynamics that should be included in the business case. The issue of developing a fair and equitable practice around the use of lateral transfers continues to be at the MERC table. The employer is having difficulty agreeing to this because it will limit the managers’ ability to control who they get in their office. It is clearly a discriminatory practice that erodes fair opportunities for many employees.
Workload: The Workload Subcommittee is still piloting the Workload Analysis Tool (WAT) in eight offices across the province. We have received useful feedback. A common concern was the accuracy of weighting for intensive supervision cases as well as domestic and sexual offences cases. The committee will be encouraging participation in an upcoming time study for these special cases so that we can verify weightings and have a more accurate tool for the provincial rollout. The Best Practices Document for Workload Distribution has been out for almost two years. Workload should be a standing item at all staff meetings and it should be discussed in a fulsome manner. That includes the sharing of workload statistics and any other information that would impact workload in a given office. Any workload issues that cannot be resolved at a local level should be referred to your Regional ERC teams for discussion at the regional level. If they continue to be unresolved they can then be referred to the MERC table as per the collective agreement. Workload concerns continue to be a high level problem in our offices. The ever-increasing demands on officers and support staff are never complemented with additional staff. There are ongoing changes to policy and practices that threaten to further increase the duties and responsibilities of our positions. In the absence of additional resources, the employer must revisit our policies and procedures to find efficiencies that will allow staff to reasonably manage workload.
Duty Assignments & Specialized Roles: The Best Practices document for rotation of duty assignments and specialized roles was released to the field in August of 2009. By this time every office should have tabled this issue at their staff meetings and started the process of equitable assignment of these opportunities
ASMPP The employer committed to rewrite their policies subsequent to the issuance of Vice-Chair Keller’s Award that was handed down on February 5, 2010. What we have seen is a softening of their position, however they have not gone far enough and we will be returning in front of Vice-Chair Keller in the near future for firm direction from the Board. Specifically, the employer continues to waffle on clear direction to the field to not include absences that stem from a bona fide disability under the Ontario Human Rights Code. That would also include WSIB absences. We have already moved the employer back a fair distance and we remain confident that at the end of the day, our position will prevail.
JASIC (Joint Attendance Strategy and Implementation Committee) The list below is the number of members who are at the various attendance levels as reported recently to the JASIC Committee. Many of the members who are included in these figures have NOT been reviewed by the Attendance Support Management Office (ASMO). In many instances, once ASMO reviews a case that member is moved down one or two levels.
Level 1 1,286
Level 2 214
Level 3 30
Level 4 11
Level 1 110
Level 2 6
Level 3 0
Level 4 0
The committee continues to press that management and union look at positive ways to address issues that create high sick time in our division.