A member of GSU Local 15 (CPS) was notified that her job was being eliminated. Since the member was on maternity leave, the effective date of the position elimination was delayed until her maternity leave ceases. However, Article 24 – Position Elimination of GSU’s collective agreements with CPS Canada stipulates that employees whose jobs are being eliminated are entitled to 120 calendar days’ notice or pay in lieu.
In the particular circumstances of this case, paid notice or pay in lieu of notice could not be made until after the member’s maternity leave ends. The problem was that the notice of position elimination made no mention of paid notice or pay in lieu of notice. Upon being alerted to the anomaly in the notice of position elimination, GSU general secretary Hugh Wagner raised the issue with CPS management on several occasions but did not receive any response. As a result, he commenced grievance action on August 24 and the matter was resolved the next day. The member in question will receive her paid notice of position elimination or pay in lieu when her maternity leave ends.
“This matter was probably more about miscommunication on the employer’s part as opposed to a disagreement over the application of the members’ rights under the collective agreement,” Wagner said. “The grievance procedure was used effectively to make sure the matter was clearly resolved in a timely manner. A formal grievance is not a declaration of hostilities. As the outcome of this case demonstrates, it can be an effective means to assist in resolving workplace issues.”
Contact your GSU staff rep for assistance with questions or concerns.