A Message from the CS Group President
I am very pleased to acknowledge the return of the CS Group Newsletter following a lengthy hiatus.
Our primary communication over the past few years has dealt with specific issues such as bargaining and IT Conversion. We have posted numerous updates on the PIPSC website with the occasional direct notice to our members. However, over the past year the Institute has adopted a different approach to communication that focuses on broader generic information and issues associated with the general membership of our union.
We believe that the voices of our union’s constituent bodies still need to be heard. The underlying strength of our union lies in the richness of its diverse perspectives brought forth through its many critical parts. The ability to freely express independent views is without doubt a key principle of this or any other union in a democratic society.
It will has been more than a year since the onset of the Covid-19 global pandemic. The impact of the past months will long be felt. The way we live, shop, socialize and work have undergone a dramatic change. The virtual workplace is the new reality and will continue to be integrated into our daily routine even after our lives return to normal.
The members of the CS Group were called upon to provide an unrelenting level of service required to maintain and create benefits that helped to sustain our economy. Your hard work ensured that many Canadian families continue to remain financially secure. We had hoped that your accomplishments would be recognized with a contract that rewarded you with equal pay for equal work, but that is a fight for another day. You should be as proud of your efforts as much as I am.
I am also extremely proud of our activists.
Our Bargaining Team, National Organizing Committee and National Executive stayed true to our principles in the face of opposition to our goal of achieving parity with our counterparts at CRA. We, needless to say, support our members’ ratification of the employer’s offer. We do remain firm in our belief that you deserve to be treated with same respect as other federal government IT workers. We know that the critical shortage of IT professionals in every department has created a shadow workforce of highly paid contractors whose compensation continues to outstrip that of our members.
Our stewards and consultation team CS members have represented our members well through the early days of the pandemic and continue to do so to date. Virtual work presented unique challenges that our stewards ably overcame. They are the core of our union and we will need to find new ways to engage them in the current environment.
Moving forward, we will do our best to engage our members and stewards. We do expect a return to a semblance of normality in the near future but until then we will continue to adapt and evolve as a Group.
We are already preparing for a new round of bargaining as we complete our review of the last. We will be reaching out to our members for both their input and their support. IT Conversion on hold for now, remains a priority.
The CS Group National Executive will strive keep you informed of all activity and events in the coming months. We will be using both the PIPSC and new CS Group websites to regularly update our members. Our goal is to post frequently on topics relevant to our union and Group. Our aim is to stay connected and be a unifying force within PIPSC.
I look forward to being a part of all that we hope to achieve in the near and distant future.
Ctrl-Alt-Del – From the Editor
The CS Executive have been working steadily on your behalf during the past year; and like you, we have all been doing that from our own homes. While the experience is different for each one of us and some prefer to work remotely, others are struggling to remain upbeat and miss the interactions with our colleagues. I have observed that while we all now work in a more isolated environment, our professionalism has kept us as productive as before, if not more so for most of us.
The same is true of the volunteers on your National CS Executive. The dedication shown and the concern they have expressed for you, our members, has been overwhelming. I am honored to be able to identify as part of this highly motivated CS Executives.
Our communications with our members have remained a top priority over the past year, especially keeping you informed on the past bargaining process. While we engaged many through social media, email and the PIPSC web pages, we identified the need for better and more fluid communications with the membership of more than 17,000 CS members across Canada. To that end, we have re-launched a CS Group website (https://www.groupeCSgroup.ca) and if you have not already looked it over, please look when you have time.
Please use the form provided on the website to update your personal email preference and submit any comments.
I am looking forward to seeing many of you again, in person, and hope that you and your families remain safe and healthy during these difficult times.
CS Group National Communications Officer
A Message from the Steward Officer
As your Steward Officer, happy Spring. It has been a challenging year for everyone and to think in a few months there will be sunnier skies with green grass and trees and flowers in bloom, is certainly uplifting after such a stressful time.
So, what does a Steward Officer do? Well, the main role is to manage the new applications and renewals of the CS Stewards and ensure they are reviewed and approved by the CS Executive. Currently we have around 360 CS Stewards across the country supporting 17,000 + members. The role of a steward is extremely important to PIPSC and to the members. A steward can perform one or many roles and responsibilities. Everything from informing members of current PIPSC events, guidance on issues, information on new rules/changes to the laws (such as Bill C-65 Anti-Violence Anti-Harassment), the collective agreement or right up to representing members to management in discussions or grievances. All these roles are important and necessary and as a volunteer you can choose how much involvement and responsibility you would like to take on. If you are thinking about becoming a steward, you can contact either a steward in your workplace or myself to discuss the process. We always need more stewards as they are the cornerstones for a supportive workplace. You will be part of a new peer group that is dedicated to improving and maintaining the health of your workplace. Many workplaces have changed over the past year, but whether you are working from home full or part time, stewards are essential to supporting members.
There is a lot of training and events available to help you in this role and endless opportunities to use the skills you learn at work, home and in your career. Some of those skills are learning and improving communication (speaking, listening), negotiation and assertiveness.
Being a steward means that you are also part of a group of volunteers that care and collaborate.
Yours in solidarity,
CS Steward Officer
Bargaining – The Next Round
My name is Robert Scott, and I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself as your new Bargaining Officer for the next round of CS Group Bargaining. You likely already know that I have big shoes to fill, those of Robert Tellier’s. Mr. Tellier led us though the last two rounds of bargaining, fighting for you against claw backs and gaining important language to protect us from the contracting out of our work. These last two rounds have been particularly difficult, and Robert carried the team through with great tenacity and professionalism and kept solidarity. Thank you, Bob!
I have been serving the CS Group Executive since 2009 and have served as a member of the CS Bargaining Team for the last three rounds. I also served as Bargaining Coordinator for the PIPSC Central Table last round.
Looking forward, we have got a lot of work to do and it will not be any easier. As our collective agreement expires in December 2021, we will be the first of the Treasury Board groups from PIPSC going back to the bargaining table. The costs of COVID19 supports will be looming and the employer will not be any easier to bargain with than in previous rounds. With the support of the membership, strong support from PIPSC, and a strong Bargaining Team, we can successfully negotiate the collective agreement that you deserve.
Please participate in our upcoming bargaining survey which will help to inform us of which issues are most important to our membership. We will be forming a new bargaining team after the CS Group Executive election and then file a notice to bargain with the Treasury Board. We will develop our proposals package and then kick off our next round of negotiations with the exchange of proposals between the CS Group and the Treasury Board.
As always, we will be counting on the solidarity and support of our membership to show the Treasury Board that we deserve a fair and equitable collective agreement. Standing strongly together, we can achieve our goals and make ourselves proud. I humbly and enthusiastically take on this role to represent the membership of the CS Group at the bargaining table and will strive to lead our team with strength, honesty and pride.
Yours in solidarity,
Attention Subgroup Presidents!
Just a little reach out and update to our Subgroup Presidents to inform you of a few changes. First of all I would like to congratulate Rob Scott on being appointed as our CS Bargaining Officer for the next round of bargaining. I would also like to thank Robert Tellier for his past service and dedication to this portfolio. It can sometimes be a very time consuming and difficult volunteer position but also very rewarding when it comes to serving our CS members. Having said this, I would like to inform you that I, Lucille Shears, have been appointed to the portfolio of CS National Executive Subgroup Officer until the fall, when we will do our annual review and assignment of portfolio’s. Rob has done a great job in this position for many years now so I might have big shoes to fill! I am planning to setup a quick Zoom meeting with all CS Subgroup Presidents to do a Virtual meet & greet and to chat about anything of interest to our subgroups and members at this time. I look forward to working with an integral part of the composition of our PIPSC CS Group members, our Subgroup Presidents!
CS National Executive
Hello CS members, as the Consultation and Labour Relations Officer for the CS Group I would like to provide you with some information on the PIPSC Consultation structure.
Union-management consultation is a forum to raise issues, share information, advice and concerns about programs, policies, and procedures, with a view to resolving both problems and concerns. These would be related to issues that affect a group or large number of employees. Issues affecting a singular member are dealt with by a Steward or ERO.
Consultation can occur at the local, regional, and national level depending on the setup of the employer.
PIPSC has Consultation Teams for each Department, Agency, and Provincial Employer Group. These teams consist of a President, Vice President(s) and team members who are employees of the Department, Agency, or Provincial Employer Group they represent. Each team is also assigned an ERO from PIPSC to assist the teams by providing advice, training and attend meetings if required, along with an Administrative Support person.
The following link will take you to the Consultation page on the PIPSC website. Here you will find a list of consultation teams. Within these team pages you will find news/information pertaining to the team along with a listing of team members and contact information. If you have not done so yet, I invite you to peruse your team’s page to find out who is representing members within your employer.
Here are some of the most common tables where you may be represented by a member(s) of your Consultation Team.
- NUMCC – National Union Management Consultation Committee
- NLMCC – National Labour Management Consultation Committee
- RUMCC – Regional Union Management Consultation Committee
- LUMCC – Local Union Management Consultation Committee
- HRUMCC – Human Resources Union Management Consultation Committee
- PHSC – Policy Health and Safety Committee
Please feel free to reach out to me or a member of your Consultation team if you require further information or assistance.
Consultation and Labour Relations Officer
IT Conversion Update
Please see the PIPSC website, in regards to requesting your latest job and up-to-date job description, ahead of the IT Conversion:
Questions can be sent to the email in that article.
The IT Conversion, in which members were to receive notices in October and Dec 2020, has been delayed, and members may not see anything, according to TB, in terms of notices until the end of 2021. TB has not provided any firm dates, but it is only when ALL departments are ready.
For up-to-date CS news, visit the CS Group website: