Date: April 14, 2022
Greetings Sisters and Brothers,
We met with the Employer on Tuesday and Wednesday the 12th and 13th to continue bargaining for a collective agreement. We came to the table with the intention of finding a way to bring this round of bargaining to an end. We tabled a comprehensive proposal that we are confident was well within what the Employer could provide and which we were comfortable to present to you. It isn’t what we started with but we will gain most by moving on to the next round of bargaining and starting that process with better ground rules and the ability to enforce them. We need to get a deal before any more time goes by.
To achieve that we tabled a proposal that had almost all the same monetary provisions as the Employer had previously tabled except for a more generous signing bonus. It didn’t include some non-monetary proposals that we have been trying to bring in because we are trying to make this the shortest route to deal that we can. We told them that’s why we were being generous. However, we did make it a condition of any deal that they withdraw their outstanding Unfair Labour Practice complaint against us. We also told them the deal is only available until the end of the day on Wednesday the 13th and after that we will go back to our previous position. If we can get a deal now, we’ll be generous. If they still want to drag this out we won’t be generous. We’ve been generous for five years.
The Employer came back with a counter proposal that was almost identical to what you have already voted against (almost a year ago). In fact it was worse since it contained no signing bonus at all. The Employer also declined to withdraw their Unfair Labour Practice complaint. We responded with an offer that maintained our entire proposal of Tuesday except the condition that the Employer withdraw the Unfair Labour Practice complaint. We also reminded them that the proposal was still only available until the end of the day Wednesday the 13th.
They caucused and finally said, through the conciliator, not directly, that they needed more time. We said we were delighted to meet again but that, as per our notice, we withdrew our proposal of the 12th and tabled a revised proposal based on our previous position. We are now scheduled to meet again on the 26th of April in order for the Employer to respond to our current position and for five days in May if they are needed.
Thank you for your patience throughout this long process. We will provide more detailed updates soon regarding the bargaining and how you can support us and your brothers and sisters. We hope to organize more actions to pressure the Employer to work toward a deal and not more delay. In the meantime please stay tuned for further updates.
Your SEIU-West bargaining committee:
SEIU-West members: Heather Dyck (Unit Chair, CBS Saskatoon); Kristie Pearton (Unit Vice-Chair, CBS Saskatoon); Jason Coombs (Bargaining Committee member, CBS Regina); Tanya Palaniuk (Bargaining Committee member, CBS Regina); • SEIU-West staff: Cam McConnell (Negotiations Officer); Marj Markwart (Union Representative) and Shelley Johnson (Union Representative).