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June 20th, 2018
June 20th, 2018

Bargaining Update

As we near our eighth month, we are all acutely aware that we still do not have a decision on the issues raised during our conciliation hearing.

Last week a rumour was widely circulating in the workplace that the decision was being released.  Several of you reported that managers at the Department of Justice were circulating the rumour and many of you were led to believe it was on good authority.

The Association of Justice Counsel finds regrettable the amount of anxiety these rumours have caused many of you, our members.

We thought we would take a few minutes to share some information about the process with you, and why you should doubt the reliability of any such rumours.

The conciliation board is made up of three panellists.  One nominee was appointed by the AJC, the second nominee by Treasury Board, and the Chair, who is in private practice and was agreed to by both the AJC and Treasury Board.  Neither the Department of Justice nor the PPSC have nominees on the panel and would not have access to any "inside information" on the panel's deliberations.  In fact, during the time that the decision is under consideration, it is considered inappropriate for the nominees to communicate with the parties.

We fully anticipate that both Treasury Board and the AJC will be advised, at the same time, once a decision is ready.  The very minute we hear anything, we will share it with the membership.  We will also be releasing the decision in its entirety prior to taking the opportunity to provide you with any analysis, which will follow in due course.

Please consider us sincere when we say we hope we will get a decision very soon.

As well, we have gotten a number of inquiries about whether a retroactive pay adjustments arising from a binding conciliation award will apply to retirees.  Article 15.03(b) of the current collective agreement sets out how retroactive pay applies "to lawyers, former lawyers or in the case of death, the estates of former lawyers who were in the Law bargaining unit during the retroactive period."    Neither party during the binding conciliation process proposed a change to this section.  Accordingly, it is expected that former lawyers will continue to benefit from any retroactive wage adjustments arising from the binding conciliation award.

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