Updated Questions and Answers - December 2018

Will PIPSC protect my current conditions of employment and benefits?

Yes. We will always strive to defend and improve the working conditions and benefits for all of our members.

As you know, there are several areas of difference between the terms and conditions for civilian members and their pay-matched comparators in the Core Public Administration. Members are rightly concerned that the employer will push for concessions during bargaining.

We have already signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Treasury Board stating that your existing terms and conditions of employment will be maintained until new collective agreements have been negotiated. Your engagement and support for your union will be essential to a favourable outcome in negotiations with the employer.

Will I be paid through Phoenix when I join the public service?

No, you will continue to be paid through your existing system and processes until further notice.

What can PIPSC do for me?

As a union member, you benefit from a number of key advantages. Your dues pay for top-notch negotiators, research staff and analysts when your group is negotiating a collective agreement. PIPSC stewards and staff provide quality representation at every step of the grievance process. PIPSC supplies expert opinions to correct inequalities in work descriptions and classifications. PIPSC legal experts know the law and provide comprehensive defence of our members’ rights. Through regular presentations to parliamentary committees, interventions in court cases, and timely media promotion and mobilization events, your voice is heard by government and the public. PIPSC can become your voice in the workplace.

How much will I be paying in dues?

PIPSC dues are set at $36.28 biweekly, so $72.56 per month. Please note that union dues are tax-deductible.

When will I start paying union dues?

In principle, union dues can be collected from the date the Labour Board Decision was rendered (April 13, 2018). The Professional Institute’s Executive Committee as decided to provide a 6 month grace period before collecting union dues from Civilian Members. Union dues will be deducted from your pay on a by-weekly basis as of November 1, 2018.

Can a Civilian Member opt out of the union?

In Canada, our legislation indicates that everyone who benefits from a Collective Agreement must pay the dues associated with that Collective Bargaining Agent. Whether or not people choose to sign-up as an active member of the Institute, the deduction and remittance of dues will occur. Based on the legislation, the only exception to paying union dues and being unionized is religious observance.

I have an unresolved/ongoing workplace issue, what can PIPSC to do help?

Should you ever face a conflict with your manager or employer, you now have the backing of PIPSC, a strong and professional union with decades of experience in labour relations, to help you navigate the grievance process and protect your rights. Our Employment Relations Officers, located regionally to serve you better, have the knowledge and expertise to answer your concerns. Please contact a PIPSC Regional Office near you:

(http://www.pipsc.ca/regions/offices)

What are my basic rights and protections versus what I will gain by becoming a full Member?

Basic rights and protections for ALL members:

  • Competitive salary negotiations
  • Better benefits
  • Pension plan
  • Job security
  • Pay equity
  • Collective bargaining
  • Representation when it counts
  • Access to our legal services
  • Non-partisan advocacy
What will I gain by signing a membership card and becoming a full Member?
  • Input Into Contract Negotiations
    • participate in ratification votes and thus influence contract negotiations
    • vote on motions and strike votes
  • ServicePlus Plan
  • PIPSC Post-Secondary Scholarship - Legacy Foundation
  • Involvement in the Institute’s Democratic Process
    • vote in the election of union officials
    • sit on committees
    • run for election
  • Become a union steward and get the necessary training to help and represent your colleagues in the workplace
  • Join the bargaining team to ensure you and your colleagues can defend and improve your working conditions
  • Join a union-management consultation group to help shape your employer’s policies and decisions
  • Participate in the affairs of the Institute

Signing a membership card is a collective benefit and is crucial to supporting PIPSC led initiatives such as negotiations and issue-based campaigns. Together we are stronger and louder and can make a difference in the workplace.

What are the differences between becoming a signed PIPSC Member and remaining a Rand formula member?

Rand members are those members who have chosen not to sign a union membership card, but who still pay union dues and are thus entitled to basic union representation and protection.

In 1946, arbitrator Ivan Rand issued an arbitration settlement that ended a 100-day United Auto Workers strike at the Windsor, Ontario Ford Plant. The union and Ford were in negotiations for two years with the union demanding union recognition and a check-off system that would make for an expedient union dues collection process. Having to collect individual dues impeded the union’s ability to operate efficiently and offer protection for its members. With talks breaking down, the union staged a mass walk out of 17,000 employees, marking the beginning of one of the most important strikes in the post-WWII period in Canada. Rand’s decision ended the strike and established the rationale on which union dues are paid today.

All those who benefit from the collective agreement should pay union dues. The employer is obligated to deduct dues from all employees’ paycheques and forward funds to the union. Otherwise, union officials would have to go from member to member each month for dues, subjecting unnecessary hardship and financial instability on the union. Without a secure flow of funds, unions could not operate effectively and provide the services to members that both union and Rand members count on for protection.

Although even members who haven’t signed a union card are entitled to a great many benefits provided by the union, there are some very important benefits you will gain only by joining.

1. Input into Contract Negotiations

Under federal jurisdiction, a membership will allow you to participate in ratification votes and thus influence contract negotiations. Furthermore, you can vote on motions and strike votes.

2. ServicePlus Plan

The Institute’s members can take advantage of the ServicePlus plan, which offers preferential rates on a number of services and programs only available to signed members. Partners of the plan are Delta Hotels, Choice Hotels, The Brick, VIA Rail, Apple, Lasik MD, Rogers, Toshiba, Tip Top Tailors, among others.

3. PIPSC Post-Secondary Scholarship - Legacy Foundation PIPSC members’ children or the grandchildren of retired members are eligible for scholarships, bursaries, awards and other forms of assistance for students entering their first year of post-secondary education.

4. Involvement in the Institute’s Democratic Process

By signing a union card, you are able to vote in the election of union officials, sit on committees, run for election yourself, or become a union steward.

Rand members are entitled to the same basic rights and protections as other members, which include the following:

1. Competitive salaries

2. Better benefits

3. Decent pensions

4. Job security

5. Pay equity

6. Collective bargaining

7. Representation when it counts

8. Legal advice

9. Research

10. Non-partisan advocacy

How can I sign up as a PIPSC member?

Completing the membership application is the first step in supporting your Bargaining Team in upcoming negotiations.

Please complete the online application form: https://www.pipsc.ca/member-tools/application

Why are Civilian Members transferring into the union before the deeming date?

Without union representation, the employer could have simply changed your working conditions on the deeming date, without any consultation.

In order to mitigate risks and to ensure that you are protected by a union as soon as possible, PIPSC submitted an application to the Public Service Labour Relations and Employment Board (PSLREB), under Section 58 of the Public Service labour Relations Act (PSLRA). This allows you to benefit immediately from the member benefits and representation services that the Institute offers their membership, prior to the deeming date.

Now as PIPSC members, RCMP civilian members can join in the process of negotiating their terms and conditions and will have a strong voice during negotiations.

When will bargaining for our terms and conditions begin?

PIPSC is currently reviewing all the terms and conditions, clause by clause, of every group impacted by the transfer to the Public Service. We’ve already worked to ensure that your terms and conditions of employment are protected until the transition into our existing collective agreements is complete. Without a union, the employer could have simply changed your working conditions without your input. As a PIPSC member, you can join in the process of negotiating these agreements and you can contribute to the outcome of the negotiations. Further information will be communicated as soon as available. Your engagement and support for your union will be essential to a favourable outcome in negotiations with the employer.

The call of interest for the Civilian Members Bargaining Team closed on September 10, 2018. PIPSC then provided orientation and training for the new team members, followed by preparation of the bargaining proposals with the bargaining team. We surveyed RCMP CM’s in October to identify the priorities for negotiations. Our goal is to exchange proposals with Treasury Board by the end of 2018, and then begin bargaining.

Your Bargaining Team Members are:

Robert Boivin, Montreal QC, RCMP CM CP-02 classification, CS Group member

Daniel Chamberlain, Ottawa ON, RCMP CM EE-04 classification, NR Group member

Sushil Dixit, NCR, SP Group representative

John Eng, NCR, NR Group representative

Crystal Gardiner, Edmonton AB, RCMP CM FSLS-02 classification, SP Group member

Karon Miles, Burlington ON, CS Group representative

Pierre Touchette, NCR, CS Group representative

What will happen to my pension once we are transferred into the Public Service?

Upon deeming, accrued pensionable service credits under the RCMP pension plan will be automatically transferred to the public service pension plan. This includes current RCMP service and previous periods of service that have been purchased while under RCMP plan (i.e. service buybacks).

This transfer will take place on the deeming date, May 21, 2020.

Civilian Members who are Group 1 members under the RCMP plan on the date of deeming will continue as Group 1 members under the Public Service Pension Plan. This is permitted by an amendment under the 2014 Budget Implementation Act, volume 2.

For more information on Group 1 and Group 2 status, please visit:

https://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/remuneration-compensation/collectivite-community/employeur-employer/pr-pp-01012013-eng.html

If a Civilian Member were to retire before the deeming date, they will retire subject to the terms of the RCMP plan. If they retire after deeming date, their retirement will be subject to the terms of the Public Service Pension Plan.

For more information on the terms of the Public Service Pension Plan, please visit:

https://www.canada.ca/en/treasury-board-secretariat/services/pension-plan/plan-information/public-service-pension-glance.html

What will happen to the current Civilian Member sick leave plan?

RCMP Civilian Members have consistently identified concerns with any potential reduction in sick leave benefits as a result of the transition into the public service. This will be a significant issue for negotiation between the Institute and Treasury Board.

Do I have access to Internal Public Service Employment Opportunities?

For the purpose of selection processes outside of the RCMP, Civilian Members are considered “persons employed in the public service”. They can apply to both advertised and non-advertised hiring processes as long as the area of selection is opened to “persons employed in the public service”. Accordingly, until deeming, they cannot deploy within the core public administration and are not subject to the priority entitlements of the Public Service Employment Act (PSEA) or Public Service Employment Regulation (PSER).

As for processes specific to the RCMP, the area of selection consistently allows for Civilian Members to apply as per their staffing alignment process.

If I apply for a Public Service job, do I have to convert to the PS before the deeming date?

Yes. By accepting employment with the Public Service, you are automatically subjected to their terms and conditions.

What will I gain by signing the Membership form?

By signing a membership card, you become a full member of the Institute. You join a powerful and collective voice, of over 60 000 members with 100 years of experience.

Your PIPSC Membership provides you the opportunity to:

  • contribute to the collective agreement bargaining process,
  • apply to join the bargaining team,
  • become a union steward,
  • defend and improve your working conditions,
  • join a union-management consultation group,
  • vote or run for PIPSC leadership positions,
  • access the PIPSC ServicePlus program, and
  • for your children or grandchildren to apply for scholarships or bursaries.

Our experience has demonstrated that engagement and participation of membership is one of the most crucial factors in determining success at the bargaining table, so now is the time to get your membership.

How do I get involved in the Union?

You can step up to be a steward and get the necessary training to help represent your colleagues in the workplace. You can join a union-management consultation group to help shape your employer’s policies and decisions. If you would like more information on how to get involved, please contact our Mobilization Team at civilian_members@pipsc.ca