Update on Phoenix Pay System Problems

Fellow Members,

Since writing to you last week about problems with the federal government’s new Phoenix pay system, I have met personally with both Treasury Board officials and the Deputy Minister of Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) to express our very serious concerns with the new system and to urge that its continued rollout be delayed until the current problems can be resolved.

The government has acknowledged these concerns but has said it will continue to rollout the new system. We have been assured that these problems can be resolved. The experience of the Institute, and of other federal unions, is that the new system is causing a wide range of problems in pay for federal employees – from numerous instances of underpayment and overpayment to extreme cases of employees not being paid for weeks. As a result, we are concerned that these problems may persist and even increase in the coming weeks, despite the hiring of new case administrators to assist with resolving problems.

I would therefore like to urge all members who do encounter problems with their pay due to the new system to carefully monitor their pay records and, in the event of discrepancies or other problems, to email the Pay Centre directly, notifying them of the problem. The government claims that doing so will result in an answer to specific issues within 48 hours.

It goes without saying that the employees at the Miramichi pay centre are not to blame for the current situation. These problems have their origin in ill-conceived cuts and an ongoing failure by the Employer to adequately staff and resource workers at the Pay Centre.

We will continue to monitor this issue closely and to press the Employer to resolve these issues quickly.

In the event that your pay issue is not resolved, I encourage you to contact your local Employment Relations Officer (ERO) in the regional office nearest to you to help resolve the issue and access emergency or priority pay where the situation warrants.

Better Together,

Debi Daviau