Two of the four conditions to continue the collective agreement were dealt with by way of Mediation following discussions at the National Joint Committee level. In two successive hearings held in Toronto with the last one on October 15, 2019, Arbitrator Robert Herman proposed to the two parties involved, the CBC and APS to resolve these litigations through Mediation instead of going through the full process of Arbitration. This was, on the part of the employer the path accepted to resolve long-standing disputes on two contentious items; the premiums paid for « on-call » work and the calculation of time to reach the mid-point mark of salary bands. In both cases, APS was represented by Michael Church from the Caley Wray firm and Toronto Local President Nathan Farr.
Both problems were poisoning relations between parties since the beginning of the 2016 agreement in November of that year. Numerous NJC meetings, as well as grievances, were flying high without any result. For the question of mid-point calculations, the CBC was maintaining its version to award moneys after eight years of service while APS was claiming mid-points should have been awarded at the beginning, in other words, after seven years of service. As for the on-call premiums, the CBC was awarding only one three-hour premium per night while APS was claiming two premiums should have been paid if a second call came in after the original three hours.
Finally, both issues were settled to the satisfaction of APS with a new formula for the on-call situation and acceptance of the APS time calculation for the mid-point argument.
As a result, some 30 members were paid retroactive payments for the delays incurred in reaching the eight-year mark of their salary bands. The APS formula provides for all employees to be adjusted to the mid-point of their salary bands regardless of the actual salaries earned when they complete seven years of service. For the question of the on-call problem, a new formula was accepted to award employees a second or a third premium when more calls are made during the same period. Instead of the three-hour premium at straight time which stills stands for the first call, the successive premiums will represent one hour and a quarter (1.25 H) calculated at the rate of time and a half for each call. Art.2 of Mediation award defines the formula in the following manner: « CBC will guarantee that the employee shall receive a minimum of at least 1.25 hours pay for work within this time period paid at 1.5 times the hourly rate or banked equivalent. » This new formula presently in force will be paid out retroactively when Shared Services succeed in programing the formula.
Tomorrow, Thursday, April 9, we will cover the last agreement between parties to resolve contentious issues preventing prolongation of the collective agreement; the Script Editors status.