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Offline George Wallace

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http://www.canada.com/ottawacitizen/news/story.html?id=b737fe4c-1255-452b-9001-f14ea31249b5&k=57718

Saturday 1 Apr 2006 Ottawa Citizen
Quote
Able-bodied soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
Law designed to help injured vets extends to all military staff

The country's 80,000 reserve and full-time military personnel will have the inside track on winning federal government jobs under a new law that goes into effect today, warn public service union officials.

Union representatives say the legislation was originally supposed to help the new wave of injured veterans returning from war zones such as Afghanistan. But they are just now discovering that it also contains a little-known clause that gives able-bodied serving military personnel the option, for the first time, to compete in internal job competitions right across the federal government.

"They'd be able to take off their uniform on a Friday and become a public servant on a Monday," said John MacLennan, president of the Union of National Defence Employees, which represents the bulk of the department's civilian workers.

Mr. MacLennan said the union has no problem with legal provisions giving injured veterans priority for public service jobs. But allowing able-bodied Forces personnel to compete for the limited number of public service openings reduces opportunities for civilian employees, he said. Many of those same civilian employees have been waiting for years to advance, Mr. MacLennan added.

The Public Service Alliance of Canada is also sounding the alarm on the new law, which it says was hammered out last year and fast-tracked without much public scrutiny or any consultation with employees.

"Members of the armed forces should be compensated for what they've done, but to give them an automatic buy-in for a job in the public service doesn't make sense and reeks from a lack of merit," said Ed Cashman, PSAC's executive vice-president for the Ottawa region.

But there appears to be confusion in the public service on who exactly is covered under the new law. Kathy Trim, spokeswoman for the government's Public Service Human Resources Management Agency, said the legislation applies only to those military personnel who have been injured. "You need a medical discharge to be able to qualify," for the jobs, said Ms. Trim.

Not so, say Defence Department officials. "This would be for able-bodied people as well," said Robert Newman, a department spokesman.

The Defence Department is the first federal organization to take advantage of the new law, but the same option will be available to other departments if they want to use it, noted Mr. Newman and the union officials.

But Mr. Newman said union concerns that military members would have an inside track on Defence Department civilian jobs is unfounded. He noted that job competitions will be held in a fair and transparent manner with existing checks and balances in place.

"The union members who are concerned have to realize there's a pretty rigorous process here," Mr. Newman explained. "They don't just cast the net and say all CF members are eligible. There's no preferential treatment."

Mr. Newman said the process will provide "an additional candidate pool of highly qualified individuals" that will help deal with concerns the department has employee shortages in particular jobs.

But Mr. Cashman and Mr. MacLennan said they have their doubts the job hiring process will be fair. Mr. MacLennan said the military has a history of pre-selecting job candidates and "parachuting" them into positions.

"Imagine that you will have a group of officers deciding who will get the job and they have to choose between a civilian and a retired military member," added Mr. Cashman. "Well, guess who is going to get that job?"

Mr. MacLennan said some in the department have admitted privately they are nervous the law might send large numbers of serving military personnel into the ranks of the public service. "Don't they think that putting this out in front of the military that there could be a mass exodus?" he added.

Canadian Forces officials have already voiced concerns about attracting and retaining people in the ranks.

Mr. Newman noted the Defence Department is focusing on specific areas for the recruitment of public servants. Those include tradespeople such as electricians, painters, plumbers, welders and mechanics, computer systems specialists, engineers, purchasing specialists, and financial and human resources professionals.

Some retired military personnel are also fighting the new law, warning that instead of helping newly injured veterans it will make it more difficult for them to obtain benefits. The law will also cut the amount of funding injured soldiers would receive, said retired Capt. Sean Bruyea.

"Anyone injured in Afghanistan after April 1, the day the legislation goes into effect, would actually get less than those hurt before that date," explained Mr. Bruyea, who served in the Gulf War.

The lifelong monthly disability benefit a veteran now receives would be replaced with a lump-sum payment, Mr. Bruyea said.

Previously, injured veterans were eligible for a disability pension worth up to $2,200 a month plus additional compensation if they were married or had children. In addition, there would be other allowances and benefits.

Under the new plan, injured veterans would receive a lump-sum payment of up to $250,000, Mr. Bruyea said. Most benefits would stop at age 65.

Veterans Affairs Minister Greg Thompson, however, has defended the law, but added he could be open to changes at a later date.

Mr. Bruyea said he met the minister and presented him with the concerns some veterans had over the new law. "I think it's pretty clear the bureaucracy has misled him and I think he's sincere in rectifying the problem," Mr. Bruyea added.

But Mr. Bruyea said he doubts there will be changes until the new wave of injured veterans from Afghanistan start seeing that their benefits are not the same as those soldiers who served in previous conflicts. "Unfortunately it's likely nothing will be done until we start seeing those veterans coming forward with their families and talking about the unfairness of the system," he added.

© The Ottawa Citizen 2006

This is a rather inflammatory article, perhaps intended to cause a rift between serving members of the CF and the Public.  After both World Wars and the Korean War, members of the Armed Forces had these privileges.  Then in the Seventies, Eighties and Nineties, it was taboo and next to impossible for a member of the CF or RCMP to apply for a Civil Service Job.  They were treated as Second Class Citizens in this regard.  Although Civil Service Jobs were supposedly open to all, members of the CF and RCMP were not allowed to enter any of the competitions.  Now we see the pendulum swinging back and Civil Service Union Chiefs fearing the unknown, and perhaps rightfully so, are bringing up these allegations.  Do they fear for their jobs?  Do they fear that former CF Members will take their skills and work ethic and apply for jobs in the Civil Service?  Perhaps they are afraid that someone with organizational skills and experience would be hired and put them to shame?

If the Public Service of Canada is really an 'equal opportunity employer' then this Bill is only setting right a wrong that has affected many former members of the CF and RCMP.  We would hate to see them hiring on the basis of a 'quota' rather than on merit.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2016, 10:39:52 by milnews.ca »
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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2006, 22:21:50 »
What they fear most is people coming into jobs who were not schooled in the union doctrine.....
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Offline NL_engineer

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2006, 22:32:11 »
I smell a complaint to the Canadian Industrial Bord  ;D. The unions are just pissed because they loose some of there power.
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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2006, 23:09:51 »
Imagine, a bunch of ex military hired into the public service. Union? UNION???.........We don't need no stinkin' union!!! ;)

Kidding aside. I think it's the typical fear mongering, same shyte they put up when they floated the idea of ps employees getting forced to serve in war zones. Cheap NDP rhetoric "Hey, look at me!!! I'm still here!!!". And as a taxpayer, why wouldn't I want the most qualified, hardest working person on the job, no matter where he comes from. It's our taxes paying them.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2006, 23:14:34 by recceguy »
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Offline tomahawk6

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2006, 00:12:22 »
Sounds great. We give a veterans preference for US government hiring as a way to reward veterans.

Offline nULL

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2006, 00:52:31 »
It sounds like a really great initiative; remind public servants what service really is.


Offline gnplummer421

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2006, 03:04:10 »
My experience with Unions is that they protect the weak and lazy, and people with superior skill cannot advance past someone with more seniority, even if the more senior person is a slug. Funny, but in a contradiction of employment, I actually worked as a Security guard (Steelworkers Union) and fulltime in the Military at the same time. I lived in Ottawa, and high rent and child support forced me to get another job.

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« Last Edit: April 02, 2006, 03:08:05 by gnplummer421 »
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Offline Haggis

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2006, 09:08:46 »
Some points of clarification:

PSC internal competitions are open to "CF members".  When this was first proposed last year I asked the question up the C of C  and was told, in writing, that "CF member" is defined as CF Regular Force and Reserve Force members on Class B and C service over 180 days.

The legislation doesn't allow CF members to apply for ANY job, just those for which they meet all the eligibility requirements (education, training, experience, language, area of search, etc., etc.).

Within DND it has been deemed that all internal competitions are automatically open to CF members unless the hiring unit excludes them (with substantiation).
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Offline Rider Pride

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2006, 10:19:17 »
This is already taking place. Here in Petawawa, we don't see a flux of new civilians coming into the area taking up the PS civilian support jobs...they are all being filled by retired service members. (Anyone go by the base clinic lately?)

Perhaps this is why the snow is melting so fast...all the hot air blowing from Ottawa.
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Offline George Wallace

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #9 on: April 02, 2006, 10:29:09 »
This is already taking place. Here in Petawawa, we don't see a flux of new civilians coming into the area taking up the PS civilian support jobs...they are all being filled by retired service members. (Anyone go by the base clinic lately?)

So in essence, they are Civilians now, and have applied as Civilians.  This opposed to a Serving Member approaching Retirement and appling for a PS job. 

On a note about what Haggis has stated, the rules are changing.  I am sure that it wasn't more than two years ago that most, if not all competitions, shut out Serving Members, and in most cases non-PS applicants.  It is good to see some changes coming about, even if they are so slow in coming.

This article, however, seems to take the stance that CF and RCMP should not be allowed opportunities in the same way that other Canadians are.  I have long since lost all regard for the Nation's Capital's major newspaper and its journalists' theatrics.
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Offline Rider Pride

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #10 on: April 02, 2006, 10:43:10 »
So in essence, they are Civilians now, and have applied as Civilians.  This opposed to a Serving Member approaching Retirement and appling for a PS job. 
Mostly yes, one was asked to come back shortly after his retirement.
But I know of NCOs that have retired since Aug. On a Fri, they were in uniform. On the following Fri, they were civilians working on base.
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Offline GAP

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #11 on: April 02, 2006, 10:44:29 »
Are not CF members employees of the Government of Canada? If competitions are based on skill & merit, why would one association's members be exempt from applying? That's all it really is PSAC is a association (spell union) and CF and former CF members belong to another association...uh..politics maybe.
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Offline Haggis

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #12 on: April 02, 2006, 20:59:45 »
I am sure that it wasn't more than two years ago that most, if not all competitions, shut out Serving Members, and in most cases non-PS applicants.

Up until the early 90's CF members were allowed to compete in internal (closed) competitions.  Back then, CF member was defined as Regular F and Reserve Force Class C only (not a lot of folks on Class C in those days).  Also, inclusion of CF members had to be specified in the competition poster.  The default was that CF members were excluded unless stated otherwise.

Are not CF members employees of the Government of Canada?

They are not "public servants" as defined in the Public Service Employment Act.

If competitions are based on skill & merit, why would one association's members be exempt from applying? That's all it really is PSAC is a association (spell union) and CF and former CF members belong to another association...uh..politics maybe.

There is no such association and CF members cannot belong to any outside association (such as PSAC/UNDE/PIPS etc.) which could benefit them while employed by the CF.

QR&O 19.09 states:
"No officer or non-commissioned member shall attempt to obtain favourable consideration on any matter relating to the member’s service by the use of influence from sources outside the Canadian Forces."

QR&O 19.10 states:
"No officer or non-commissioned member shall without authority:
   
  (a) combine with other members for the purpose of bringing about alterations in existing regulations for the Canadian Forces;
   
  (b) sign with other members memorials, petitions or applications relating to the Canadian Forces; or
   
  (c) obtain or solicit signatures for memorials, petitions or applications relating to the Canadian Forces."


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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #13 on: April 03, 2006, 07:03:17 »
Quote
Then in the Seventies, Eighties and Nineties, it was taboo and next to impossible for a member of the CF or RCMP to apply for a Civil Service Job.
George: As Haggis alluded to, the doors were open up until the early 90's (I beleive 91 or 92). Prior to that, it was quite common to see (my trade for exmaple) Sup Tech's retiring after 20 and sliding into STS 3/ 4 positions. I was in Edmonton at the time and a bit bitter at this change as it was always my intent to do 20 or 25yrs and then slide over and drive forklift all day  :)
Now - after 30 plus, I'll head back to Edmonton as a Class B. With the PS opening it's door and all of the Class B opportunties, life is good.

Offline pbi

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #14 on: April 03, 2006, 07:07:22 »
I wonder what motivates this fear and loathing on the Union's part? (A union, by the way, that already contains a number of former serving CF people...). Is it really a concern for a fair hiring process (i.e: one that ensures that the best person gets the job), or is it a fear that the federal public service might "fill up" with people who have spent their adult lives in an environment of following instructions, working as a team, and putting forth extra effort with no guarantee of reward? But, really now, could the CF even generate enough suitable candidates to "fill up" the public service to a degree that would change anything? I am reasonably sure that all other Fed govt hiring policies will remain in place (bilingualism, vis mins, etc), and that we will still require applicants to be qualified for their positions. It is hard to imagine the union's fear-mongering becoming reality.

Perhaps there is a bigger issue here: unions' fears about their own survival. Unfortunately, while acknowledging that in the early 20th century unions did fight some good fights and helped to established more fair and humane treatment of workers, since that time they seem to have become more concerned about extracting the largest possible pay cheque for the least amount of work, protecting the lazy and incompetent, and shielding the corrupt and criminal against the public interest. I watched my grandfather, a skilled machinist in the 1950s-70s, become increasingly disillusioned with the labourmovement in Canada, which he said had "lost its way".

Cheers
« Last Edit: April 03, 2006, 07:10:06 by pbi »
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Offline Centurian1985

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #15 on: April 03, 2006, 18:56:53 »
 I was very pleased to hear that the new legislation has finally been pushed through that will allow former military members to compete for jobs within the Defence Department.  Who better to hire for a job in the military than someone who understands how the military works?  I also see that numerous union members have publicly voiced concern over this new pool of competition.  They should be concerned!  There is nothing more dangerous than hiring an experienced and competent former military member who can accomplish jobs quickly, work with limited supervision and inadequate resources, and who would be grateful for a job.  But would the addition of military personnel to the work-pool be a realistic threat to the union members?  Not really.  Here are a few barriers already in place to keep those ill-educated, boorish, soldiers who lack merit from polluting up the ranks of the Public Service Alliance of Canada or the Union of National Defence Employees…

1. First, as a military member, you have to register with the system, overcoming PSAC administrative employees who will be obstructive towards your attempts to invade their well-feathered nests.

2. Then you have to locate the job advertisements for PSAC and UNDE positions, which as of last year, are accessible only from government terminals.  That means you can only access the job sites if you have access to a terminal AND have an account.

3. But before you can apply, you have to be released from the military.  Oh wait, now that you are out of the military you no longer have an account or access to a government terminal.  Ooops!

4.  That’s okay, we have a government department who can help you find that job.  Oh wait, you haven’t moved to your final place of residence yet? (All military members are entitled to a final move after 20 years service to a place where they intend to work and live).  Well, you can’t apply for that job until you have finished moving to the province of your choice.  Then the local agency will receive your file from your original location and will try to get a hold of you (oh, that’s only if the local BC phone company hasn’t gone on strike for four months and has not yet hooked up a phone to your new house!).
 
5. Found a job you want to apply for?  Great, where is your resume? We could help you write one but that’s not our job, although we can give you some advice on how to write an outdated resume that will guarantee no-one will look at it.

6. Okay you gave us a resume, and we have your file.  Oh sorry, we don’t recognize your credentials or even know what they mean.  I hope you kept records of every course you took over the last 20 years.  Better yet, we hope you went back to school to get your credential recognized or maybe get some certificates that we will recognize.  Didn’t anybody tell you that before?     

7. Oh, I’m sorry but there are almost no jobs with the federal government in the area you have chosen to live.   Because of downsizing and budget reductions we have moved nearly all jobs to the major cities.  Maybe you could apply for one of the jobs in the city.  Oh wait, you can only apply if you live within a specific distance of the available job.  You would have to move to the city first in order to even apply for the job! Too bad!

8. Oh great, you’ve found some work for yourself.  Don’t worry we will keep looking for a federal job you. (It is almost one year since I retired from the military with an injury sustained during overseas service.  I have yet to receive notice that any federal jobs are open for me despite 10 years of management experience, a university certificate in management, and a university diploma in HR management.  It would seem I am not even good enough to work as a janitor!)

Thanks to other military programs that existed, I was able to upgrade my education and gain recognition for some of my credentials.  I got help from numerous people in the HR field on how to write a resume and what information was appropriate to put into it.  But when it came to getting a job, I received no help and no offers.  In closing, I hope all future retirees will have better luck than I did with this new system.  I would be extremely interested to know if the same barriers that I faced are still in place.

Offline ArmyRick

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #16 on: April 03, 2006, 19:29:22 »
PBI has a good point. Unions when they first started out protected workers from unfair and harsh working conditions with shyte pay.  Now unfortunately it seems they protect anybody.  Funny thing, ever go get a low paying industrial job in the GTA? It sucks to see how non-unionized industries still abuse people in the same way as was done 50,60,70,etc years ago.  That is unfortunately why unions will survive.

Poor leadership in the industrial sector = neccessary unions.  :(
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Offline muffin

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2006, 08:50:43 »
I started in my current (Public Service) position as a Cpl (Res) and when the position went civilian was able to apply and was successful. What I have found the most difficult about the transition is the non-transferability of military skills etc. They didn't care about my 2 years at CFSCE and my Int 3's, my computer training while in etc... what they cared about was whether or not I had a civilian institution's piece of paper saying I could do what I had already proven I was able to do while wearing "green". I am still struggling with this now (as I work away at my Bachelor Degree!)

My Boss here is a retired Maj as well, and he was med released. DND used to have a policy that CF members being med released were added to the priority list for all available positions (ie they had first choice). I don't know how the new policy will effect this.

My hubby has been sent on numerous courses lately (he's LCIS) and whenever he attends a civi "school" he gets the civi "paper" qual as well. This, I think, is a step in the right direction for NCM's who don't have the degree requirement.

Hopefully the new "act" will consider some/all military training like it does civilian training/education.

I think the union is afraid that all new jobs will be filled by this " percieved back log of pre-retirees just waiting to be able to jump ship." I haven't heard much about it out of my union (PIPSC) - but PSAC is making some noise for sure.

muffin
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Offline George Wallace

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2006, 09:19:04 »
I think the union is afraid that all new jobs will be filled by this " percieved back log of pre-retirees just waiting to be able to jump ship." I haven't heard much about it out of my union (PIPSC) - but PSAC is making some noise for sure.

muffin

Glad you made that last statement.  Most people think only of PSAC.  There is actually two or three Unions for Civil Servants.  This is one reason they always seem to be on Strike, and the resolving of issues takes so long.  PSAC may go on strike for higher wages, and reach an agreement, but then PIPSC will be in a strike situation a few months later and then they will have to also bargan for a settlement.  In the meantime, CF members wonder how long before they will get their Pay Raise and how much it may be......all dependant on all the Civil Service Unions having reach some form of settlement before hand.  It is a wonder this country ever gets anything done properly (if ever).

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Offline muffin

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #19 on: April 04, 2006, 09:39:33 »
Yes this is true - PSAC settled in the Fall and we (PIPSC). After perusing our site - it turns out we are on strike alert (groan) and may be heading to the picket this spring/summer.  (This is all the civi computer staff).

I hope they just settle.

muffin
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Are Soldiers eligible for "In service" Public Sector Jobs?
« Reply #20 on: July 26, 2006, 20:46:50 »
I have been hearing conflicting reports about the eligibility of CF pers to apply for in-service public sector jobs with the government. I know that there are a tonne more than that shite "Jobs open to the Public" website, and wish to apply for some. Does anyone know if this is true, and if so where I could find further information about it.

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #21 on: July 27, 2006, 09:28:41 »
Yes this is true - PSAC settled in the Fall and we (PIPSC). After perusing our site - it turns out we are on strike alert (groan) and may be heading to the picket this spring/summer.  (This is all the civi computer staff).

I hope they just settle.

muffin

It's my opinion that it all depends on which union represents certain employees that makes the difference.  Certain unions represent employees who make substantially more than those who belong to PSAC (a generalization that is mostly true).  I always felt that those who make a lot more money than they receive in strike pay will negotiate a settlement or vote for an arbitration hearing if negotiations fail. 

Last I heard, PSAC members were making about $100/day in strike pay during the last strike.  If your daily salary turns out to be, for example, $110/day, then it might be worthwhile to strike for awhile and you won't necessarily go bankrupt when you live paycheque to paycheque.  However, if you make, for example, $200/day and you only receive $100/day in strike pay, then you have a real incentive to avoid going out on strike and either settle or end up in arbitration.

My union, CAPE, since becoming a PS employee, has only settled or gone to arbitration.  Subsequently, my union dues are substantially less than those of PSAC employees because it doesn't need to save for the day when it goes out on strike.

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #22 on: July 27, 2006, 09:36:22 »
Quote,
Last I heard, PSAC members were making about $100/day in strike pay during the last strike.

 Delegates at the 2003 PSAC Convention increased strike pay from $35 to $50 per day
http://www.psac-afpc.org/news/publications/update06/vol18_05/18-05-e.pdf

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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #23 on: July 27, 2006, 09:49:06 »
These are valid comments. Who in the new government is the one responsible for implementing the program of CF personnel having priority in Public Service jobs, and are they being innundated with queries? Are we getting any feedback, is there anything in the pipeline, other than vague rumors?
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Re: Soldiers get inside track on PS jobs
« Reply #24 on: July 27, 2006, 10:01:42 »
Bruce is right - strike pay for PSAC is only $50/day ... and it is not received until well after the strike... so people on strike have to live without pay for QUITE a while if they strike for a few weeks.

Begbie,
My union, PIPSC, settled. We will not be striking. We have never planned mass walkout anyways as far as I know - just strategic "work to rule" type striking - hitting where we are needed most etc. In this case you get 65% of your pay tax free or something - though we never got that far so I can't say for sure.

Now as I recall... CAPE represents EC/SI (Customs and Revenue Executives/Social Services) ... and they make SIGNIFICANTLY more than your average AS1 or CR4 (PSAC groups), as do several (though not all) groups within PIPSC. I think a groups willingness to strike also depends on where the majority of it's employees are located. For example, the majority of the CS's are in Ottawa. There is a large number of private sector IT/IS/IM jobs available in that area and that probably affected the vote.

I am not sure how any of our negotiations impact on the CF's pay increases. All I know is that everytime PSAC strikes, the CF gets a raise...lol . I don't know if our unions are considered or not.

That's enougth of a hijack for me lol - this thread was supposed to be about CF members applying for PS jobs haha.

Jobs are still available through government intranet at http://publiservice.gc.ca

Muffin



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