Nov. 30 & Dec. 1-2, 2020

National Executive Minutes

National Executive Meeting

Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 – 2, 2020

Virtual Meeting

Chairperson June Winger National President
Members Dan Frost Vice-President (NL/NB)
Terry Kiley Vice-President (NS)
Michel Allard Vice-President (QC)
Jeff Wrinn Vice-President (NCR)
Carolyn Handley Vice-President (ON)
Mona Simcoe Vice-President (MB/SK)
Bryan Meakin Vice-President (AB/North)
T. Mark Miller Vice-President (BC)
Cathy O’Kane Vice-President (NPF)
Eugene Stone Vice-President (CSE)
Paul Jones Human Rights Advisor
Recording Secretary Sandra Mombourquette

Absent                               Benoit Laberge                 Executive Vice-President

 

OPENING REMARKS

The National President welcomed the National Officers to the Fall meeting, the first official meeting virtually.

The harassment statement was read aloud by Human Rights Advisor Paul Jones who was also named intervener.

The hours of sessions were adopted as follows:

Monday, November 30           10:00 – 12:00 / 1:00 to 4:00 (EST)

Tuesday, December 1            11:00 – 4:00 (EST)

Wednesday, December 2       11:00 (EST) to termination of business.

 

The agenda was adopted.                                                         m-s O’Kane-Meakin / CARRIED

 

HONOUR ROLL

A moment of silence was observed for the following members who have passed since the last meeting:

Brother Yves Lauze, Local 10503

Brother Stéphane Pageau, Local 10525

Brother Rémi Chrétien, Local 10526

Brother Steven Biondi, Local 10527

Brother Ronald (Ron) Wayne Maximick, Local 21007

Sister Shadi Mojtabavi, Local 21008

Sister Mary Wilson, Local 21008

Brother Gary Prud’homme, Local 30902

Brother Glen Dagley, Local 70612

Brother Ron Wulf, Local 70654

Brother Rodney Lewis, Local 40802

 

PRESIDENT’S UPDATE

Last NE meeting: The last NE Meeting was Feb. 2020 just as Covid-19 was hitting the world but not in Canada yet.  As a Union, we have done well, we ensured the safety and protection of our members without any major crises.  Although we started out having challenges with the employer but with some tough actions, which were needed, it made relationships stronger with the Department and our members as well as better choices for our membership as a whole.  We encountered some challenges such as postponing our Triennial Convention, not a decision that this body took lightly.

AGMs: These have been going well virtually this year, some have been hybrid when able to, getting good attendance and working out well.  Some Locals have decided to postpone to next year.

699 Leave:  The request and denial of this leave is being challenged successfully, although very little challenges being brought up.  Any issues with it should be raised up to the National President.  Members are encouraged to submit grievances and to make sure to get their Labour Relations Officer (LRO) involved.

Collective Agreements:  All collective agreements have been ratified.  Already looking at next Collective Agreements.  PSAC is having an early Bargaining Conference this year.  We need to work with Locals quickly for proposals.  A callout will be going out shortly for bargaining proposals.  Not sure how we will have this conference this year virtually.

New rates of pay:  These are now in effect; retro is pay for members is being calculated for Feb-March timeframe.  Still waiting on CRA for taxability of damages.  Some members are asking why this is a 3-year agreement and not a 4-year negotiated agreement but that’s because other unions settled early which created a pattern settlement.  This will however put us ahead for the future.

Military Spousal Employment Initiative:  The National President continues to encourage Locals to watch what is happening in the workplace and raise up any questionable hiring practices.  The National President is still receiving very few examples, need details to correct this.

Contracting In:  The report is doing very well and has the Department’s attention.  Lots of media on this.  This campaign has been successful as it continues to spread across the nation.  Webinars in some regions will be taking place soon.  National UMCC coming up and this is on the agenda.  Issue with ATIPs with getting information but will continue to push on this.

VP Simcoe says she has heard threats from Management who say to “be careful what you ask for, you may not like what you get if you push this”.  They say they have no SWE for that so they could possibly get rid of more public service.

Human Rights Advisor Jones said that in regards to the ATIP requests, they are not meeting their timelines and we are not receiving the information we require.  The members should file a complaint with the Privacy Commissioner.

Black Lives Matter:  There have been issues at PSAC with racism and it is still ongoing, awareness has been raised due to this.  There needs to be significant changes to make any progress.  NBoD members are getting training.  UNDE has its own challenges with this as we don’t have many racialized member activists on the Locals and National Executives.  The National President is working together with the Human Rights Advisor Paul Jones and the Seema Lamba at PSAC on this.

Staff working remotely:  The National President said that UNDE National Office Staff have embraced working remotely from home and this has proven to be very successful with no issues.  Many files are electronic now and processes done online.  She thanks the Staff for their flexibility and hard work.

 

 PREVIOUS MINUTES – ADOPTED                           m/s Handley-Meakin        CARRIED

STANDING ITEMS

ADM-IE (RP Ops) Report                                                                                m-s Miller-Wrinn

VP Miller presented his written report which gave highlights of the UMCC ’s meeting which took place on November 20, 2020.  Management has said the contract has been awarded and will begin work shortly.

VP Simcoe asked what will become of the Employee Advisory Panel, Management used for workplace issues and not Union.  VP Miller said its coming from the ADM to be able to speak directly to the workforce.  VP Miller says he is against it and has had discussions about this with the ADM, he is keeping an eye on it and attends these meetings, he will work on getting this panel shut down.

VP Simcoe also asked about the issue of the FR uniforms/station wear that has been ongoing since 2017 and would like this to keep being brought up at each meeting until it is addressed.  VP Miller said he has forwarded this to the new Chair of the FR Committee VP Meakin for continuance.

RV 1 – CARRIED

Real Property Ops Unit Ontario LMCC                                                       m-s Handley-Kiley

VP Handley presented her report.  Last meeting was in October.  They support telework as much as possible. The next meeting is in January 2021.

RV 2 – CARRIED

 

Real Property Ops Unit West LMCC                                                              m-s Simcoe-Meakin

VP Simcoe presented her written report.  New Commander in place who is familiar with the locations and is very much in favour of public service and civilian employees.  Funding for ODM has been stalled during pandemic, will follow up in new year.

RV 3 – CARRIED

                                               

Real Property Ops Unit Atlantic LMCC                                                         m-s Kiley/Frost

VP Kiley presented his written report.  Meeting held in September. Staffing being worked on to clear up backlog of positions.  ODM will be opening an office in Gagetown as those cases were taken care of out of Halifax before.                                                             RV 4 – CARRIED                                                            

 

Real Property Ops Unit Quebec LMCC                                                         m-s Allard/O’Kane

 VP Allard presented his written report.  They have had two UMCC meetings by Teams.  There was an issue at the Firehall in Valcartier but the Local President there has the support of the Lt Col.

RV 5 – CARRIED

 

Air Command                                                                                               m-s Miller/Simcoe

VP Miller presented his written report.  Meeting was held in November, waiting for minutes to be signed off.  FR overtime in Dundurn was raised due to positions that are not being properly filled which has led to overtime.

RV 6 – CARRIED                                                                                                         

2nd Canadian Division Support Group (CDSG) – Quebec                             m-s Allard/Frost

VP Allard presented his written report.  Nothing to report as the meeting is upcoming on January 28, 2021.

RV 7 – CARRIED

 

3rd Canadian Division Support Group (CDSG) – Western Canada          

m-s Simcoe/Handley

VP Simcoe presented her written report.  There were many meetings and management was interactive with the union during the pandemic to ensure the workplace was doing well.  The Union expressed their concern with not being able to receive staffing vacancy reports.

                                                                                                                       RV 8 – CARRIED                                                                     

4th Canadian Division Support Group (CDSG) – Central                        m-s Handley/Wrinn

VP Handley presented her written report which was a nil report.

RV 9 – CARRIED   

                                         

5th Canadian Division Support Group (CDSG) – Atlantic Canada                m-s Frost/O’Kane

VP Frost presented his written report.  VP Frost and VP Kiley attended a hybrid meeting in November.  The report covered Business Resumption Plans as well as ODM and EAP.

 RV 10 – CARRIED 

 

Canadian Forces Housing Authority (CFHA)                                                m-s Frost/Allard

VP Frost presented his written report which is a nil report since the Committee is meeting tomorrow.  They will discuss business resumption plans to come up with a plan that works for everyone.

RV 11 – CARRIED 

 

Canadian Forces Health Services (CFHS)                                                      m-s Wrinn/Frost

VP Wrinn presented is written report.  CFHS will be busy with the upcoming military support to the Covid-19 roll-out.  VP Simcoe asked if there is workplace process for providing contact tracing in the workplace.  The National President gave background on this and how it was not supported in the beginning as Public Health in the province determined this process.  However, Public Health has been overwhelmed and as a result the Department will start to do it in order to maintain employee safety.

RV 12 – CARRIED

 

DRDC                                                                                                             m-s Meakin/Handley

VP Meakin presented his written report.  The Committee has had frequent meetings since the pandemic started.  Employees working from home have been provided all necessary equipment.  Each center has its own protocols and business resumption plans in place.

                                                                                                                                    RV 13 – CARRIED

Apprenticeship                                                                                              m-s Miller/Wrinn

 VP Miller presented his written report.  The program is wanted, however there is no funding to support it, therefore the regions are asked to come up with the funding if they so want it.

RV 14 – CARRIED

 

PRESENTATION to UNDE National Executive: Phoenix Damages – PSAC Presentation

Erin Sirett and Julia McDonald, both from PSAC, gave the National Officers an overview of the Phoenix damages roll-out process.

STANDING ITEMS

Bylaws                                                                                                              m-s Miller/Kiley

VP Miller presented his written report.  As tasked by the National President during this period, the Committee reviewed the UNDE Bylaws pertaining to a postponed Triennial Convention and the guidelines on moving into the next Convention, it being either in person or virtual.

There was some discussion on the harassment reports that are asked to be sent by the National Officers.  VP Simcoe asked how the reports could be improved in order to get them done.  VP Stone said the form itself is intimidating to fill out.  VP Miller said he is flexible and accepts the report in any form.

RV 15 – CARRIED         

 

Employee Assistance Program                                                                     m-s Wrinn/Allard

VP Wrinn presented his written report.  There has not been a meeting this period.  The EAP booklet has been released.  The Lifespeak Annual Utilization Report has been issued with the breakdown.

                                                                                                                      RV 16 – CARRIED

FR Steering & Wellness                                                                                 m-s Meakin/O’Kane

VP Meakin presented his written report, the first part of the report is from the former VP ON before he retired in October.  VP Meakin hopes to have a meeting in December with the new CFFM.  The Fire Marshal Directives not being enforced will be discussed at this time.

RV 17 – CARRIED

 

PRESENTATION FROM PSAC HEALTH & SAFETY: Presentation on Bill C-65

The National Officers attended a Zoom virtual meeting where an update was given by PSAC Health & Safety on Bill C-65 workplace harassment and violence regulations.

 

STANDING ITEMS

Health & Safety                                                                                            m-s Kiley/Meakin

VP Kiley presented his written report.  All seven UNDE work refusals related to Covid-19 have been completed and are closed.  The ODM office will be hiring 14 more advisors across the country, especially in the Prairies.  The DAOD 2007 on cannabis use in the workplace was put on hold during Covid pandemic, working on this to become an impairment policy.  Bill C-65 will be coming into effect in January .

                                                                                        RV 18 – CARRIED                                                                    

Finance                                                                                                           m-s Meakin/Frost

VP Meakin presented the Committee’s written report.  Unallocatted lists have been sent to the Locals since members are in limbo.  National Officers who have outstanding claims should send these in now, also make sure corporate Visa cards have accurate charges.

RV 19 – CARRIED

 

MOTION – Auditors                                                                                       m-s Meakin/Handley

 Whereas UNDE must reappoint an auditor for every fiscal year to verify their financial statements;

Whereas UNDE has used the service of McCay Duff LLP as auditors of their financial statements and are satisfied with the results and costs.

Be It Resolved That UNDE reappoints McCay Duff LLP for the audit of their 2020 fiscal year.                                                                                                                       

     RV 20 – CARRIED

 

Young Workers                                                                                             m-s Simcoe/Allard

VP Simcoe presented her written report.  The Committee has started meeting using Teams to have monthly meetings.  New reps in a few regions, still need reps in NCR and Quebec.  Young worker reps are available to do a short presentation at AGMs if so desired by the Local.  Posters are approved and finalized, they can be printed and put up on union boards, will also be added to the website.  Still working on job descriptions.  National Office to set up UNDE email addresses for each regional young worker representative.

RV 21 – CARRIED

                                                          

LMCC Army Commander                                                                              m-s Frost/O’Kane

VP Frost presented his written report.  This is a nil report since the meeting was postponed to December 14, 2020.                                                    

      RV 22 – CARRIED

 

ADM Mat GLMC                                                                                            m-s Simcoe/Meakin

VP Simcoe presented her written report.  It’s been a busy year, continue to meet regularly to go through business resumption plans and discuss what COVID has done to the readiness of the fleet.  Flash hoods for the firefighters in Esquimalt has been taken of and are on order.  Firefighter station wear was also discussed with a Nov-Dec timeline but could be pushed back again.

                                                                                                                              RV 23 – CARRIED

CMSG                                                                                                             m-s Simcoe/O’Kane

VP Simcoe presented her written report.  Facilities are full so there was no room to bring in new supplies.  Need to improve the supply chain to have a better crisis plan in place and proper capacity.  Key priority in business plan is focused on DMINO (Distribution and Material Inventory Network Optimization).

                                                                                                                            RV 24 – CARRIED

NEW BUSINESS

 2021 UNDE Triennial Convention – National President

 Although we postponed our August 2020 Convention to 2021, it seems unlikely given the ongoing pandemic circumstances that we will be able to have an in-person Convention in August 2021, therefore this body has to make a decision sooner rather than later.

The National President made it clear that if we were to cancel the contract we currently have in St. John’s, NL at the Delta Hotel, the penalty fees would be as follows:

Cancelling 181 to 365 days prior to arrival the fees are $279,619.20;

Cancelling 91-180 prior to arrival the fees are $386,764.80;

Cancelling 0 to 91 days prior to arrival the fees are $435,456.00.

As we get closer to the date of arrival the percentage of penalty fees increases.

The National President advised that while the convention is now scheduled for August 2021, time is of the essence to allow for proper preparations to be made by the staff, the host committee and the delegates.

As per the last few National Executive bi-weekly Teams calls where the National President asked the National Officers to discuss with their Locals to prepare for this decision, the discussion was opened to the group on their thoughts regarding scheduling a virtual versus in-person convention.

Following the open discussion, the National President thanked the group for their feedback and said that it will require a motion for a final decision on the way forward.

 

UMCC Check-in with DM – Update from National President

-ADM HR-Civ is the center of expertise on Bill C-65 and will be the receiving body at DND.

-DM is concerned about members feeing isolated working from home as well as parents dealing with childcare needs.  The DM said it is important for members to take leave and rest although they are not forced to take leave; they can carry-over leave.  Block leave cannot be forced.  If there are instances where HR has been poorly advising members on this, the National President asked the National Officers to capture any discussions contrary to this and send to her along with names.

-Flu Clinics, some have been delayed due to contractor delay in receiving PPE.  Vaccinations have otherwise been going well, they will look at doing this in an ongoing manner for DND.

-Rumour of program reduction due to economic update, the DM said absolutely not true, she does not see any reductions and hopes these rumours stop.

 

MOTION – UNDE Triennial Convention                                                         m/s Meakin-O’Kane

 2021 UNDE Triennial Convention to be Virtual

WHEREAS the COVID-19 Pandemic has not been contained Globally and cases are continuously increasing Nationally;

WHEREAS large group gatherings are prohibited and pose a serious threat of infection.  Further spreading of the virus can have serious impacts on the health of Canadians, including the possibility of death;

WHEREAS the 2020 UNDE Triennial Convention was postponed to August 23-27, 2021 with the hope that the threat of the virus would be contained or disappeared and that a face-to-face convention would be possible.

BE IT RESOLVED that the 2021 UNDE Triennial Convention be held virtually for both debate and voting of resolutions and budget, as well as elections for all positions as defined by UNDE’s By-laws;

BE IT FUTHER RESOLVED that the location of the first possible Face-To-Face Triennial Convention be held in St. Johns Newfoundland as was proposed and secured for the 2019/2020 Triennial Convention.

After some discussion and a lack of consensus, VP Meakin withdrew this motion.

The National President asked the National Officers to consider that National Office needs to start planning as soon as possible and are stuck in a holding pattern until this decision is made.  National President Winger advised Officers to give this serious consideration and consult with Locals as necessary so that we may be prepared to address this when a motion is proposed.

REGIONAL REPORTS

Newfoundland, Labrador & New Brunswick Report                                   m-s Frost/Stone

VP Frost presented his written report which gave an update on each Local, most AGMs will be done in person with protocols being followed, some Locals will defer AGMs.  There continues to be ongoing Phoenix issues across the region and the pandemic has forced cancellation of all training that was scheduled.  DVP Dennis Sheppard will be retiring.

                                                                                                                              RV 25 – CARRIED

Nova Scotia Report                                                                                       m-s Kiley/O’Kane

 VP Kiley presented his written report which outlined various meetings he attended between March and December 2020.  A rally was held in Halifax outside the MPs office in protest of contracting out of DND work.

RV 26 – CARRIED

 

Ontario Report                                                                                           m-s Handley/Meakin

VP Handley presented her written report.  VP Handley took of over the position in October 2020 from Brother Serge Desbiens who has retired.  Since this time, she has assisted members with Covid-19 work related questions and issues. The region has been actively involved in the movement against the contracting out of DND work.

                                                                                                                           RV 27 – CARRIED                   

Quebec Report                                                                                                 m-s Allard/Frost

 VP Allard presented his written report.  In February there was a Phoenix demonstration in downtown Montreal.  VP Allard has had a bi-weekly call with his Locals since the pandemic began to deal with issues as they arise.  The Valcartier firehall is still having a lot of problems.

RV 28 – CARRIED

 

STANDING ITEMS

Honours & Awards Report                                                                      m-s Kiley/O’Kane

VP Kiley, the Chair of the Committee, presented the Committee’s report.

There was a total of 3 scholarship applications received at National Office.  The successful recipients met all the requirements and were therefore recommended for the $2,000 scholarship, and they are:

Haley Hood, Local 21008, Victoria, BC, awarded the Ken Green Scholarship.

Stephanie Essex, Local 30908, Wainwright, AB, awarded the Pat McGrath Scholarship.

Robyn Bretecher, Local 50705, Winnipeg, MB, awarded the Gary Smith Scholarship. 

 There were also three applications for 30-year pins successfully awarded to the following retiring members who met all the criteria:

Pattie Gasper, Local 40802, Regina

Margaret Fowler, Local 40802, Moose Jaw

Maxine Crampton, Local 40802, Moose Jaw

                                                                                                                      RV 29 – CARRIED

REGIONAL REPORTS

National Capital Region Report                                                                    m-s Wrinn/Handley

VP Wrinn presented his written report.  VP Wrinn has had regular meetings with his Locals since Covid and had a local OGUL meeting where they discussed local issues within the NCR.

                                                                                                                            RV 30 – CARRIED         

Communications Security Establishment Report                                        m-s Stone/Frost

VP Stone presented his written report.  The majority of staff have been working from home since March.  Negotiations for a new CA contract continue.

                                                                                                                      RV 31 – CARRIED

 

Non-Public Funds Report                                                                              m-s O’Kane/Allard

VP O’Kane presented her written report.  During the first few months of the pandemic, the employer was discussing major layoffs, however thanks to the help of National President Winger, many of the layoffs were able to be stopped.  VP O’Kane raised concerns with the employer about the benefits for those members who were laid off.  Three NPF locals in Quebec successfully secured new CA agreements.

                                                                                                                            RV 32 – CARRIED

 

Manitoba/Saskatchewan Report                                                                 m-s Simcoe/Wrinn

VP Simcoe presented her written report which highlighted the meetings attended of the various labour/management committees at which she represents UNDE.  Also updates on activities in the Locals.  The contracting in campaign has been moving across the Prairies and doing very well.

RV 33 – CARRIED

 

Alberta & The North Report                                                                     m-s Meakin/Stone

VP Meakin presented his written report.  VP Meakin has continued to have monthly regional teleconference calls with his Locals to keep the pulse on issues in his regions.  Most of his Locals have had or will be having their AGM with the help of PSAC Regional Office.

RV 34 – CARRIED

 

PRESENTATION TO NATIONAL EXECUTIVE on 699 Leave – Yaffa Jarrar, Grievance and Adjudication Officer from PSAC provided some guidelines to the National Officers on the 699 Leave.

 

British Columbia Report                                                                               m-s Miller/Frost

VP Miller presented his written report.  Communications between labour and management needed some adjusting during the pandemic with changing policies and numerous meetings.  A few Locals have had their AGMs with more scheduled.

RV 35 – CARRIED   

   

Human Rights Report                                                                                   m-s Wrinn/Handley

National Human Rights Advisor Jones presented his written report.  During the pandemic, COVID-19 presented a number of problems for some of UNDE’s equity seeking members, however, most have been resolved.  In July the National Human Rights Committee held a teleconference.  The Human Rights video is still in production and should be completed in the coming months.  Also working on a UNDE Human Rights award in conjunction with the Honours and Awards Committee, the plan is to have it ready to receive nominations at the UNDE Triennial Convention in August 2021.

                                                                                                                            RV 36 – CARRIED

NATIONAL OFFICE

Executive Vice-President Report                                                                  m-s O’Kane-Allard

In EVP Laberge’s absence, VP O’Kane as the alternate EVP presented his written report listing his activities and meetings for this period as well as the LRO and grievance reports. COMTRA has had no training requests due to the pandemic but is looking at options on how to provide virtual training in the future.  COMTRA is planning the next Local Presidents Conference for 2021, VPs are asked to send in the name of their regional contact for the organizing committee.  A reminder to members to use the proper email address for Phoenix issues (payissues@unde.org).  There are still many outstanding grievances, the EVP asks that the National President bring this up with the DM, National President Winger confirmed she has brought it up many times.

RV 37 – CARRIED                                                                                                                                                          

NEW BUSINESS

UNDE Facebook Page – VP MS said that since March 9, 2020 the approval process for posting to the UNDE Facebook page has changed and that it takes too long for posts to get approved and posted currently.  She is asking for the pre-approval of posts be removed and to continue with automatic posting to Facebook as was done prior to March 9th.  VP MS stated that the approval process did not prevent members from editing their initial post nor from commenting on any post hence she questioned the purpose of the approval process. The National President asked National Officers to voice their objections to removing the approval process, since none did the original way of posting will resume.

ROUNDTABLE

Face Masks:  VP NPF asked if UNDE National Office would reconsider offering face masks to be sold in the boutique.  No National Officer objected to proceeding. The National President said that she will ask the National Office Staff to look into pricing for 3-ply, unionized masks that Locals can purchase if they so choose.

Next NE Meeting: The National President proposed March 15-17, 2021 as the next virtual National Executive Meeting.  Sister Sandra Mombourquette will check everyone’s availability and will confirm.

 

Adjournment.