CANADIAN FORCES HOUSING AGENCY (CFHA) UMCC
HELD MARCH 25, 2013 – UNDE EVP REPORT
Ms Dominique Francoeur, CFHA CEO, opened the meeting by welcoming the committee. Brother Carm Icaci attended representing ACFO.
Agenda. The agenda was accepted as presented.
Workforce Adjustment. The CEO provided an update on the status of CFHA WFA:
|As of June 27, 2012 – Total affected employees||
(as of March 21, 2013)
WFA Processes Completed
|Departure – Option A||
|Departure – Options B, C(i), C(ii)||
|No longer affected (volunteers met the cuts, affected letters were rescinded)||
Registered alternates 14; completed alternations 3 within DND; one alternation being considered. The majority of the still affected employees are employees employed in the sites scheduled for closure.
Healthy Workplace. The CEO advised that the employee survey postponed in the spring was completed in September/October 2012, results have been analyzed and will be shared shortly. An action plan to address concerns raised will be developed and integrated into the Public Service Employees Survey (PSES) action plan. The CEO stated that the results of the PSES were more positive because the PSES was conducted prior to the WFA activity.
The CEO updated the committee on the status of the Business Process Mapping project advising that the financial analysis and the march in/march out process analysis are now completed. The CEO advised that the mapping of the 21 identified processes is more complex than anticipated and a lot of effort.
Human Resources advised that CFHA employees participated in two days of training with Excellence Canada (formerly NQI) acquiring self-assessment tools. These tools can also be used by the employees to assess other organizations.
Service Delivery Options Analysis. The CEO advised that the final report from the consultant is due anytime. The review is an analysis of the current CFHA model and processes; the consultant is to provide recommendations on “best delivery methods”. Red tape has been identified as a negative. The CEO reminded the committee that CFHA does not have Vote 5 and DND believes that CFHA should be self-sufficient. UNDE EVP asked if this is DND’s wish then why don’t they give CFHA what they need to be self-sufficient?
Many options are being considered such as status quo and P3. UNDE EVP asked why P3 is a consideration? The CEO advised that the previous budget mandated a P3 assessment on any initiative over $100M. The CEO added that she did not believe a P3 would be a viable option considering CFHA manages 26 sites. UNDE EVP countered that UNDE did not think a P3 was viable at CSE but it happened. The CEO stated that it is unlikely that the government would put up the money required in a P3 to draw interest from a third party. Where there is a will, there is a way.
Official Languages. UNDE EVP stated that a concern was raised to her office by a Local President on behalf of a group of employees who have been directed to answer the phones in the second official language. The CEO explained an official language complaint from a PMQ occupant and a follow phone call from the Office of the Official Languages Commissioner resulted in the direction issued by the site manager. The committee discussed the employer’s obligations under the Official Languages Act and the challenges the organization is facing, example vacant positions and staffing.
UNDE EVP acknowledged that the worksite in question is considered bilingual. UNDE acknowledged the employer’s obligations and their need to meet those obligations. However, UNDE EVP advised that that staffing shortfalls in the office are not the employees’ fault or responsibility. The employees in question were hired as unilingual (English), they are not bilingual, and they are not comfortable speaking in the second language. They have a right to go work and be comfortable in their work environment. UNDE EVP questioned if the addition of “bonjour” in a greeting would meet the interpretation of an “active offer”, adding that the proposed use of “bonjour” calls the employee’s and organization’s credibility into question more so than a complaint does.
The employer committed to looking at options including conducting a review of the current positions for status and job requirements, suggesting language training could be offered, but they ruled out an automated telephone service (1 for English, 2 for French).
The CEO was adamant that customer service will prevail. At a minimum there will be an “active offer” – in this case that minimum will be that employees are asked to say “bonjour” as part of their telephone greeting.
In a follow up email UNDE EVP offered a suggestion that that a phone line be dedicated and advertised to French speaking clients.
Term Report (as of March 19, 2013)
Human Resources advised that there are currently 12 term employees in CFHA at various locations across the country, they are required to backfill encumbered positions that are vacant for sick leave, maternity leave or some other short term reason such as a pending CWMB staffing approval.
Grievance Report (as of March 2013)
Level 1 PSAC/UNDE Effective Date of WD 4
PSAC/UNDE Refusal of Overtime 1
PSAC/UNDE Refusal of LIA 1
PSAC/UNDE Effective Date of Reclass 1
Level 2 0
Level 3 PSAC/UNDE Termination 1
Classification PSAC/UNDE Group and Level 34
No pending PSST (staffing) Complaints.
CFHA CEO asked if UNDE is aware of the status of the EG Essential Services Agreements (ESAs). UNDE EVP advised that she believes that the ESAs are complete. UNDE EVP advised that it is not the union’s responsibility to inform employees that they are considered essential. UNDE stated that the advisory process has to be discussed and agreed to, however, in the past the advisory has been done in writing and the written notice has been jointly delivered by the employer and union.
ACFO raised the following questions:
Status of request for staffing exemption. CEO reminded the committee that CFHA is not included in the mandated cuts within DND. On this basis CFHA has submitted a request to be exempt from the CWMB staffing approval process. No response has been received as yet.
Status of the SWAT. GM Operations explained that SWAT stands for “Special Work Assistance Team”. Employees can submit their names to their Regional Manager as volunteers to work in other locations for a short term (one to three weeks) to cover off surges and shortfalls. To date, 14 employees have volunteered.
Next Meeting. To be confirmed.
Questions and comments are welcomed.
Executive Vice President