PSAC 77001 members, whose path to unionization has been fraught with challenges at the Ontario Labour Relations Board, are getting closer to a first contract.
After an organizing drive that began in 2019, workers at NewFound Recruiting became unionized in August 2020. The company was brought in by IBM to hire talent in order to fulfil a contract it won from Shared Services Canada. Members at local 77001 provide information technology services to the federal government.
Since formally certifying with PSAC, members have taken bargaining training in 2021 for the newly formed bargaining team and completed a bargaining survey in late 2020.
The first package of proposals was presented to the employer in June 2021.
Because it’s a new local and a new contract, key articles needed to be agreed upon prior to the union presenting a monetary package of proposals.
The bargaining team has been able to come to an agreement in principle on core issues around strikes, lockouts, probationary periods, anti-discrimination and anti-harassment policies, grievance procedures, health and safety, job descriptions, classifications, and evaluations, seniority, and the job posting process. These articles are subject to ratification by the membership and so are not yet in effect but contain key provisions and clarifications on issues in the workplace.
In April 2022, the union presented the complete monetary package of proposals, which includes leave provisions, health care benefits, an RRSP matching plan and the wage proposal.
In keeping with the broad pattern of the public service, PSAC is pushing for a standardized wage grid with progressive steps.
The union is also pushing for general economic increases in each year of the agreement, and a provision to adjust the increase if the consumer price index exceeds the economic increase. This would mean that should workers face run-away inflation during the life of their contract, there are measures to adjust the yearly economic increase to keep wages competitive.
Bargaining resumes June 8-10.