CAPE Responds to Misleading Message Generated by the Employer

June 11, 2014

A misleading email message implying that the outcome of the negotiations was a fait accompli recently circulated through a number of departments and agencies. In response, last Wednesday, we sent a letter of protest to the deputy ministers involved which you can read below.

Subject: Template message concerning a wellness strategy and collective bargaining
We have received complaints from many of our members throughout the public service to the effect that a message, apparently prepared centrally and adapted by individual departments and agencies, is circulating misconceptions about the bargaining process. Specifically, the message announces that the employer is setting up a short-term disability plan, and it also states that sick leave provisions of collective agreements will be changed at the bargaining table. Members of CAPE and of other unions have gathered from this message that employees must inevitably be prepared to make concessions at the bargaining table, which you should know is not true.

CAPE is disappointed to see departments and agencies intervening in this manner in the collective bargaining process. If you have already distributed such a message, I would respectfully ask that you refrain in future from making references to what may or may not be occurring at the bargaining table. If you have yet to distribute the message in question, please don’t, and please continue to respect the integrity of the bargaining process for the remainder of this round of bargaining.

The current round of bargaining is an opportunity to create a more positive relationship between employer and employees. But it also has the potential to put lasting scars on that relationship. We all need to be responsible.
Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.

Claude Poirier