Letter to Commissioner Lucki About Discharge Requests
March 18, 2020
Commissioner Royal Canadian Mounted Police
RCMP National Headquarters
73 Leikin Drive
Ottawa ON K1A 0R2
By email: Brenda.Lucki@rcmp-grc.gc.ca
We received information last evening that RCMP Human Resources will not be approving any request to rescind discharge requests from members who submitted their requests in anticipation of deeming.
We are surprised and disappointed by this sudden and unexpected decision. While we appreciate that Section 22 of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Regulations, 2014, provides that the resignation of a member is irrevocable once accepted by the Commissioner, you retain the discretion whether or not to accept the resignation where circumstances warrant.
In fact, we understand that RCMP members were permitted to withdraw their retirement discharge requests following the November 27, 2017, announcement by Acting Commissioner Daniel Dubeau of the first delay of deeming
In preparation for a May 21, 2020, deeming date, a discharge request deadline of February 1, 2020, was posted for civilian members planning to retire prior to the deeming date, to ensure timely processing. Members were actively encouraged to proceed at that time without notice of the deeming decision and warned that discharge papers submitted after this date might result in complications with their pension payments
In your Commissioner’s Broadcast of March 2, 2020, announcing the delay of deeming, you acknowledged how difficult this process has been for many members, that members were anxiously awaiting word on the way forward for deeming, and noted that some members were feeling their connection with the organization would be altered following deeming.
It is in this context that some members have expressed their desire to retire as civilian members, prior to the anticipated date of deeming.
This changes now that deeming has been postponed, and given the precedent set in 2017/18, members entered into this process anticipating they would have the opportunity to reconsider their discharge requests in the event that a decision was made to delay deeming.
There was no indication in the Infoweb communications concerning the application deadline that discharge requests would be treated differently this time, and considered irrevocable. The RCMP knew full well that members would reconsider their discharge if deeming were to be delayed, but did nothing to forewarn applicants of this possibility or provide notice of this change in approach.
Finally, it is important to consider the exceptional circumstances that we currently face as Canadians, public servants and global citizens. The extraordinary and rapidly evolving global pandemic has had a dramatic and unforeseen impact on the world’s financial markets, including Canada’s, severely reducing the retirement savings of many Canadians. Many are having to alter or delay retirement plans as a consequence.
We therefore urge you to take immediate steps to rescind this decision and permit members to withdraw their discharge notices, if so desired. I would appreciate receiving notice of your decision, at the earliest opportunity. We have also sent the same letter to Nancy Chahwan, Chief Human Resources Officer at the Treasury Board Secretariat.
President, The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada
President, CUPE Local 104