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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

AM I PART OF LOCAL 504?

If you work at or your manager is located at 5700 Yonge Street, Toronto, then YES you are part of Local 504.

It has come to our attention that many of you were unsure of how you could participate in voting when you are not physically working out of 5700 Yonge.  Make sure that you always read the For more information link to see how you can be involved.

If there is something that you need to participate in we will make sure that all locations in the province are available to you to make sure that you can participate whether it’s in a vote or to join in on a meeting.

WHY ARE YOU ASKING ME TO FILL OUT FORMS IF I'M ALREADY PAYING OPSEU DUES?

As you are aware, due to privacy, our employer does not inform our Local of any new members or changes you have made to your contact information.  In order to keep our records up-to-date, the responsibility lies with the member to inform us of those changes.

HOW IS IT THAT AN OPSEU WORKER IN OUR SECTION WHO HAS LEFT ON MAT LEAVE WAS NEVER BACKFILLED BY MANAGEMENT?  MANAGEMENT THEN SPLIT UP HER TASKS AMONG THE MULTIPLE AMAPCEO STAFF.  IS THIS RIGHT?

OPSEU members must be more aware that they are NOT to do any AMAPCEO work and more importantly...that AMAPCEO should NOT be doing our work.

WHAT IS LERC?

​Our Local currently does not have an active LERC.  But what is it, well each Local in the Ontario Public Service should have an elected Local Enforcement and Renewal Committee (LERC) which meets with local management to resolve issues that have been brought to their attention.  Issues not resolved at the Local level may be referred to the MERC.


The MERC team addresses issues that affect members in the whole Ministry.  Issues not resolved at the Ministry level are referred to the Central Employee Relations Committee (CERC) for resolution.


The CERC also deals with issues that affect the OPS as a whole. The CERC meets once a month.

WHAT IS AN EMPLOYEE PORTFOLIO (EP)?

The information collected is used to match surplus employees to vacancies, and to identify bumping options for OPSEU employees.

Login to access the internal OPS website for more information.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN TEI AND VEO?

The Voluntary Exit program allows regular, regular part-time and flexible part-time non-surplussed OPSEU-represented employees to register with the Employer to have their home position identified for targeted direct assignment matches for other employees who have been declared surplussed. Where a match occurs, the Voluntary Exit registrant receives entitlements under Article 20.2.1.3, Article 53 or 78 and Appendix 9 paragraph 4b (if eligible), and the qualified employee who had originally been declared surplus is assigned the Voluntary Exit registrant’s home position.

The Transition Exit Initiative program allows regular, regular part-time and flexible part-time OPSEU-represented employees to volunteer to exit the Ontario Public Service, and there is no matching of positions required. The value of the exit payments that are provided to employees approved to exit the Ontario Public Service under the Transition Exit Initiative differ from those provided to an employee who is surplussed. These exit payments are identified under Paragraph (5)

WHAT IS SPECIAL AND COMPASSIONATE LEAVE?

According to the OPSEU Collective Agreement, Article 49-Special and Compassionate leave states: A Deputy Minister or his or her designee may grant an employee leave of absence with pay for not more than three (3) days in a year upon special or compassionate grounds.

This means that we can request this leave and management will consider the circumstance in deciding where the request will be approved.

The OPSEU Collective Agreement Articles 49 and Article 79 all write to “Special or Compassionate Grounds”. Whereas Article 25 “Leave – Special” considers Special or Compassionate Purposes. Hence, the requirement for absence from the workplace with pay doesn’t have to include an element of “compassion” in order to qualify for management approval under the condition and Articles related to Special and Compassionate Leave.  If an event or activity can be defined as Special to the Employee and supported with their business case, then it should be evaluated accordingly. 

Examples of requests for special and compassionate leave:

  • Unable to attend work due to weather conditions

  • Failure of caregiver to turn up

  • Illness of family member

  • Medical appointments

  • Attendance at court

  • Transportation breakdown

  • Legal matters

  • Assisting a person in need

  • Household emergencies

  • Ceremonies and celebrations

  • Moving

  • Death

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WHAT IS A GRIEVANCE?

A grievance is a complaint.  But not all complaints are grievances.  Simply because an employee has a gripe or a problem, it doesn't mean that she/he has a grievance.  The following is the Five Point Grievance Checklist, if you feel you have an issue and would liek to discuss please contact your steward.

1. Violate a provision in the Collective Agreement
2. Wrong interpretation in the Collective Agreement
3. Violate Federal or Provincial Law (e.g. Health and Safety, WDHP)
4. Violate Past Practice.
5. Violate worker or union rights.

WHY DO I HAVE TO COMPLETE A PDP AND AN ILP?

Performance Development Plan and Learning Plan

Many of us will have completed the “PDP” for the last fiscal year and have had a review meeting with our managers to discuss how we have done to achieving our career goals of work what we are interested in learning for the next fiscal year.

What is this document?

Performance management is an ongoing discussion between you and your manager to help you make a successful contribution to achieving business goals.  It also sets an appropriate environment for planning and improving on your career development opportunities.  The learning plan is a key companion to the performance plan and outlines the key learning activities at work that you hope to achieve each year. 

What should not happen?

This document should not be punitive.  It is only to be used for learning, to improve yourself to better help your organization.

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CAN I REQUEST APPROVAL FOR PAID LEAVE EACH YEAR TO OBSERVE CERTAIN RELIGIOUS HOLIDAYS?

The following information has been copied from MyOPS


How does it work?

All OPS OPSEU employees may request up to two paid days annually from your total special and compassionate leave.

How do you record this in WIN?

  1. Select Request Absence and under Filter Type select Special Compassionate LV, *Absence Name will come up Special Compassionate LV.

  2. The next drop down box is *Reason, select Religious Accommodation and then in Requestor Comments should indicate Chinese New Year’s or whatever religious holiday it is. 

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I'M BEING ASKED TO WORK OVERTIME.  HOW DO I CALCULATE THIS? DO I GET PAID FOR THIS OR CAN I TAKE THE TIME OFF AT A LATER DATE?

ARTICLE UN 8 – OVERTIME
The overtime rate for the purposes of this Agreement shall be one and one half (1½) times the employee’s basic hourly rate.

Employees in Schedules 3.7 and 4.7 who perform authorized work in excess of seven and one-quarter (7¼) hours or eight (8) hours as applicable, shall be paid at the overtime rate.

Employees in Schedule 6 who perform authorized work in excess of 7.25 hours on a regularly scheduled work day shall receive:

  • (a) compensating leave of one (1) hour for each hour worked between 36.25 and 44 hours per work week, in respect of the total hours worked during the week on regularly scheduled work days; and

  • (b) compensating leave of one and one-half (1.5) hours for each hour worked in excess of 44 hours per work week, in respect of the total hours worked during the week on regularly scheduled work days.

  • (c) The compensating leave shall be taken at a time mutually agreed upon. Failing agreement, the ministry shall reasonably determine the time of the compensating leave

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CAN ACCUMULATED OVERTIME BE CARRIED OVER?

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HOW DO I READ THE OPSEU SALARY SCHEDULE?

Every OPSEU member's position is categorized under the Unified Salary Schedule to a particular classification group which includes: Administrative Classification Group, Institutional and Health Care Bargaining Unit, Office Administration Classification Group, Operational and Maintenance Classification Group, Technical Classification Group.

Do a search within the Unified Salary Schedule to find your classification position.  Example:

09OAD  OFFICE ADMINISTRATION 09
1/1/2021 25.38 26.17 26.77 27.35 27.98 28.73 29.58     3-7


Each classification is identified by the following:

  • Code - This is a unique code. Example: 09OAD

  • Description - This describes the code. Example: OFFICE ADMINISTRATION 09

  • Hours of work schedule - There are different schedules that can be assigned. Example: 3-7.  For more information see OPSEU Collective Agreement, ARTICLE UN 2 – HOURS OF WORK

  • Year a seven step salary grid - At the start of the period displayed, when you find your hourly salary rate, that will determine what step you are within the salary grid. Example: 1/1/2021 25.38 26.17 26.77 27.35 27.98 28.73 29.58. So if your hourly salary is 27.35, then this means that you are at step 4 within the O9OAD classification salary grid.

WHAT IS INVOLVED WITH CARRY-FORWARD EXCESS VACATION CREDITS?

We are all able to carry over one year's worth of vacation, anything above would be considered excess and if not used up it could be lost.

It is suggested that the following is done and documented:

  • 1. Email your manager and cc your HR Advisor to request to carry over excess vacation as it cannot be used up at this time.

  • 2. Complete the form, Excess Vacation Carry-Over Request Form to carry forward your excess vacation days to the following year and get an email confirmation that it is acknowledged.

  • 3. Login to WIN and screen capture/print the details of your vacation.

Example:

Date                 Entitled  Used  Excess

January 2019   20          10      10

January 2020   30          5        25

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