Opening Statement



Wednesday, 12 December 2012

OECTA Metro 7 OLRB

[Scroll down for acronym list at bottom of Dec. 11 blogs. Today's news links are also below]



[Some readers have, quite understandably, found this post rather hard to make sense of. There are many subtleties in the text which I am just quoting for accuracy's sake. Quite simply, if possible: All 4 of local OECTA units and the Metro 7's OLRB's complaints about OECTA Provincials ratification process for the OECTA MOU are being heard as one case. OECTA Provincial is asking for them to be dismissed from moving forward under Bill 115 under which the MOU cannot be challenged. The MOE has been notified and is waiting to see if they are to be heard before she intervenes to stop them. OECTA Provincial is arguing that the complaints concern internal political matters that should be addressed within the association itself.]

These minutes were provided by the Metro 7 to share with my readers. My understanding is that they were recorded at the public hearing by OECTA Sudbury Elementary. I have reprinted the discussions from the hearing as they appear in the minutes. Our focus is on those parts of interest for the Metro 7's Ontario Labour Relations Board complaint. The highlights on the text are my own to hopefully make it easier to read. Some acronyms have been explained in full within brackets by myself for your convenience.

The OLRB hearing was convened by Mr. Bernard Fishbein [BF] Chairman of the Board at 9:45 am in the Superior Room, 4th Floor, 505 University Ave, Toronto, ON

Those recorded as present were: the York President, Ottawa President, Halton Elementary President  + their lawyer; CUPE + their lawyer, Sudbury Elementary President + their Lawyer; "three from TSU" [sic]; a lawyer representing Sudbury Catholic, Halton Catholic + York Catholic Boards; OECTA lawyers + staff. Also 6 observers in the gallery.

The minutes begin with the chairman describing the purpose of the hearing as follows:
OECTA has made a preliminary motion that all four of these complaints should be dismissed preliminarily. When I first made the order to unite the cases, most were unrepresented, but they have somewhat now consolidated. Today, I will hear from OECTA why these complaints cannot and should not proceed legally.  I will let OECTA start and then proceed around the table from the complainants. [sic]
At this point CUPE requested a brief clarification and stated their position in the matter. The following conversation is recorded: 
Our interest is solely in relation to Bill 115. We have absolutely nothing to say about the internal workings of OECTA. One of the defenses that OECTA was presenting was that Bill 115 prohibited some of the relief sought. On Bill 115, I want to raise this issue.
BF [Chairman]: Apparently Bill 115 says that I should not have any say as well.
CUPE: I am looking at section 12 of the PSFA. [Putting Students First Act] Notice is to be served to the Minister if the Act is to be interpreted, we understand that service of notice has not been served.
BF: You are advancing the position that we cannot proceed this morning until the Minister has been served notice.
CUPE: No, I am not saying we cannot proceed. I am saying the board cannot interpret the bill without notice being served to the Minister.
BF: So you are saying I cannot proceed without notice being served on the Minister?
CUPE: (QUOTED FROM PSFA)
OECTA:  Have any of the complainants given notice? I have. I contacted (name)\(asked MJ who he had spoken to at Ministry, and MJ indicated PS) at Ministry and advise him that application of Bill 115 would come into play. He asked me to send him a copy of he application, he received Halton copy. I have been notified that the Minister of Ed has decided that at this stage she will not intervene but reserves the right to intervene if the case goes beyond the prima facie motion. [sic]
Next, OECTA's legal position is summarized in the minutes as follows:
Effective remedies [are] available outside of the labour board and government remedies.We are at a position after very difficult negotiations with the government and the financial situation and Drummond report. The complaints in my view are a fundamental dispute between provincial and local bargaining authority. We have to go back to 1998 and Bill 160, it really changed CB in education sector in two ways:
1.) Name provincial association executive as the bargaining agent
2) it made the Provincial government the main funder of the education system, no longer the local boards and property taxes.
Change of bargaining authority has caused bargaining tensions within all the affiliates. The other thing it did was create a different bargaining atmosphere in that Government place a more central role and more active role in the negotiations.
The essential question underlying all of these complaints is “whether the PE [ provincial executive] had the authority to enter into the MOU without the authorization of the COP, and two complaints even say you need the authority of the local units themselves. In my submission this is the real political tension in these complaints Provincial vs Local. [sic]
To be continued: The Metro 7 discuss their case with the Chairman of the OLRB. 

Below are the sections of the OLRA that the Metro 7 focused upon in their complaint. They are listed here as they were forwarded to me. The bolding is not my own. I regret any errors that might occur in the spacing and highlights when they were copied and pasted here for posting. I provide them in advance for your consideration.
A ratification vote is mandatory before the proposed collective agreement can take effect:
44.  (1) A proposed collective agreement that is entered into or memorandum of settlement that is concluded on or after the day on which this section comes into force has no effect until it is ratified as described in subsection (3). 1995, c. 1, Sched. A, s. 44 (1)
Exceptions:
(2) Subsection (1) does not apply with respect to a collective agreement,(a) imposed by order of the Board or settled by arbitration;(b) that reflects an offer accepted by a vote held under section 41 or subsec 42 (1);(c) that applies to employees in the construction industry; or(d) that applies to employees performing maintenance who are represented by a trade union that, according to trade union practice, pertains to the construction industry if any of the employees were referred to their employment by the trade union. 1995, c. 1, Sched. A, s. 44 (2); 1998, c. 8, s. 6.
The voting requirements are:
(3)  Subject to section 79.1, a proposed collective agreement or memorandum of settlement is ratified if a vote is taken in accordance with subsections 79 (7) to (9) and more than 50 per cent of those voting vote in favour of ratifying the agreement or memorandum. 2000, c. 38, s. 6.
Duty of fair representation by trade union, etc. means:
74. A trade union or council of trade unions, so long as it continues to be entitled to represent employees in a bargaining unit, shall not act in a manner that is arbitrary, discriminatory or in bad faith in the representation of any of the employees in the unit, whether or not members of the trade union or of any constituent union of the council of trade unions, as the case may be.1995, c. 1, Sched. A, s. 74. 79. Strike or ratification vote to be secret:
(7)   A strike vote or a vote to ratify a proposed collective agreement or memorandum of settlement taken by a trade union shall be by ballots cast in such a manner that persons expressing their choice cannot be identified with the choice expressed. 1995, c. 1, Sched. A, s. 79 (7).
Who has the right to vote:
(8)  All employees in a bargaining unit, whether or not the employees are members of the trade union or of any constituent union of a council of trade unions, shall be entitled to participate in a strike vote or a vote to ratify a proposed collective agreement or memorandum of settlement.1995, c. 1, Sched. A, s. 79 (8).
[My Note: The other part of the Metro 7 complaint against OECTA Provincial, as it referred to the OECTA handbook was explained by the Metro 7, and summarized for us in their letter posted here December 11th.]

For your Comments please see the button below ... 

39 comments:

Anonymous said...

Can you please explain what happened clearly. I do not understand. thanks

ETFO Steve said...

I need to know if I'm reading this right . . .

So I live in the same apartment building with a couple of other tenants; 1. the OECTA Provincial executive and 2. Minister Broten. Seems the minister and the executive have been co-habitating and lately have been cooking up a really stinky stew, which they plan to sit down and enjoy together. I mean, this stew smells really terrible, awful bad. OK? The odour permeates the building, has seeped into my apartment and is really starting to make my life miserable. I can hardly stand it. After I can take no more of the ghastly aroma I decide to complain to our building's superintendant. As a tenant in this building I too must have some rights, right? But I am told that in order to register this complaint and have it fairly dealt with I must first get permission from the cookers of the stew!!! Otherwise, too bad, so sad. Suck it up or move to another building!

Is this what I am reading here?

David Chiarelli said...

Basically Bill 115 is being evoked to stop the complaints from moving forward through the Ontario Labour Relations Board. OECTA provincial is arguing that it is otherwise an internal political matter that should be dealt with some other way. That's just my read on it anyway.

Anonymous said...

Pretty clear indication that the oblections of ETFO, OSSTF, CUPE, etc. are grounded in a reality where this stinking piece of legislation provided is DESIGNED to provide a bullet-proof vest for a lunatic Minister of Education to ride rough-shod over the long-standing (and hard-fought-for) rights of workers Education workers in this province. And... OECTA is complicit is supporting this position. Shameful.

Anonymous said...

Well maybe now we know why OECTA has been so silent on Bill 115, don't we? Imagine that - OECTA Provincial actually USING the powers of Bill 115 for their own purposes against their own members? Wow.

Anonymous said...

It's Us (OECTA MEMBERS) versus Them (PROVINCIAL OFFICE). Disgusting. We need impeachment laws like the USA.

Anonymous said...

There has to be some checks and balances in the system- "absolute power does seem to be corrupting absolutely" as Lord Acton said.

Anonymous said...

In the words of Paul Cavaluzzo (OECTA's Lawyer) If you don't like it go to the OECTA AGM and "as they say in Brooklyn, throw the the bums out!"

Anonymous said...

It is time for us to step up and challenge those who decided it was their right to sign away the rights of the members. We need to start spreading the word and up the pressure. Time for those who sold us out to resign.

Anonymous said...

I will be voting NO on principle to anything put in front of me. NO to contract stripping and NO to the shabby and disgusting treatment of the membership by OECTA Provincial, and also some Unit Leadership.

But I do seek clarification on one point, David, that you have commented on before. It regards the units that have ratified their contracts so far - beyond the local issues they may have agreed to, is there language in these local contracts that explicitly says that their unit has accepted the terms of the MoU signed in July? This point seems to be in contention. OECTA members need to know what they are agreeing to! Could you please use your contacts and try to clarify this issue?

David Chiarelli said...

One contract did and the other did't. I'm not sure which. You need to look at the contract language to see if it makes reference to any of the MOU terms.

Anonymous said...

How could your members, OECTA throw 1.5 million workers "under the bus"? Shame on any OECTA member who voted yes in any way shape or form. I truly tried for months to defend OECTA members because of what their OWN PE did to them. But no longer, the more yessus, the more that I think they are worse than Laurel Broten or McGinty because they KNOW better. I am so sorry, David! Can not/ nor will not defend OECTA members anymore!

David Chiarelli said...

Quite a few of our units will be pressured to sign a contract between now and Christmas. Most of the members are operating in the dark. We need to let them know in each of our own units what to look for in a contract and what is at stake.

If it includes any of the terms or language of the MOU, you are approving it and kissing your hard earned gains away. The MOU will take it away Dec 31, but hopefully not with your consent. Thats crazy! You have nothing to gain by going along with it except to support the OECTA Liberal deal under duress. Is that how you want to run your union? Your life? Is there no more dignity left anymore? You know when you give into bullies they don't go away, they are just emboldened. It won't help you.

David Chiarelli said...

And no, we can't expect others to feel sorry or support us because the PE signed it. Our members or units who support the MOU contracts are complicit in it too.

Unfortunately so many OECTA members have been kept in the dark and fed shit they might very well vote yes. OSSTF and ETFO included and involved their members in the process to develop a union understanding, sensibility and consciousness. OECTA?

Do good Catholic boys and girls just do as they are told and not question authority? If so one has nobody to blame but themselves. Whats all this talk about fighting injustice if we don't do so ourselves?

Even if OSSTF and ETFO get their butts kicked good, at least they are united and have their dignity left intact. OECTA might not survive this crisis. We will have neither.

angryoectateacherOTTAWA said...

The Ottawa unit will be voting on Monday. NONE of the MOU language is incorporated in the agreement. The MOU is attached as an appendage. I went to the info meeting and this time there was no outrage. About 300 or so attended and my sense is that it WILL be ratified. The unit is endorsing it. It is local stuff only. Still, I am voting no on principle. People need to know that it is NOT an MOU vote. MEDIA needs to report on that.

Anonymous said...

Plebeians: Live, Brutus! live, live!

1 Plebeian: Bring him with triumph home unto his house.

2 Plebeian: Give him a statue with his ancestors.

3 Plebeian: Let him be Caesar.

This is one of my favorite little passages from Shakespeare's wonderful play 'Julius Caesar'. Brutus has just finished explaining to the Roman people (plebeians) that he killed Caesar because Caesar had amassed too much individual power, making everyone else akin to 'slaves'. The Plebeians raise NO objection to Brutus' explanation, and, then as you see, immediately wish to bestow the same powers on Brutus: 'Let him be Caesar".

Why do I quote this passage? David, with the ratification votes coming in from OECTA, I am beginning to feel the same disappointment toward my OECTA teacher colleagues as I do the provincial leaders who keep them in the dark. Your blog, David, is testament that there are many of us who are absolutely disgusted by this travesty that OECTA has enacted, who are engaged, and knowledgeable of what is going on. However, there are far too many OECTA members, like the Plebeians above, who are far too willing to bury their heads in the sand, ask no questions, and immediately throw their support behind whoever stands in front of them. The lack of engagement and simple knowledge of the facts of what has gone on with this entire contract process for the last year by a significant number of our colleagues is appalling. I feel that OECTA leaders prey on this apathy.

et tu, Ottawa, Peterborough, and any other units with upcoming votes?

Vote NO!!

Anonymous said...

There seem to be a lot of Neville Chamberlains (the greatest appeaser in History) out there and no Winston Churchills!!! OECTA needs the latter, not the former!!!We need real LEADERS not people who hide out in the woods during periods of difficulty!

Anonymous said...

There is a big list of candidates running at AGM 2013. Ask them where they stand on the MOU and Bill 115?

Candidates (in Alpha order):

Chrisopher Cowley
Jeremy Cox
Sonia DiPetta
Andrew Donihee
Warren Grafton
Ann Hawkins
Chris Karuhanga
Reno Melatti
Julie Pauletig
Kevin O'Dwyer
James Ryan
Richard Schrader
Marcie Tombari
Michael Wozniak

+ more to come

Anonymous said...

Does an illegal (unratified) MOU make an illegal Bill 115? Remember OECTA provincial is saying the the OECTA MOU is the foundation of the infamous Bill 115.

Anonymous said...

Here's a reality check: You stay in slavery when the Presidents don't give you a vote: One member One Vote. The AGM is just a reminder that every OECTA member does NOT get a vote on any of the resolutions talked about or any vote on those candidates running for Provincial Office...True reformed leadership would allow membership wide voting...All OECTA members need to protest Provincial OECTA Headquarters and the AGM 2013. Retake OECTA: you pay all the bills.

Anonymous said...

David

Can you please post the minutes of the executive so called MOU "ratification" vote on July 5 and the COP meeting on July 10 so we can see how our "precious" leaders voted on these occasions? We need to be able to tell our friends from our enemies based on the way they looked after member interests during these votes. Actions speak louder than words. We know that our President O'Dwyer was off signing the infamous MOU at the time of the exec vote so his position was clear!

David Chiarelli said...

Yes! I have the voting lists for PE and COP. They were publicly released just hardly anyone seems to know. Hmmm. Its just a matter of preparing it to post [not easy] and so much news happening so fast. Look for it this weekend, when I plan to get back to your other questions too.

David Chiarelli said...

Love the Shakespeare analogy! Somebody needs to arise on a point of order during UAGM 2012 and yell into microphone "Et tu Brutus?" ;-)

David Chiarelli said...

Hi Angryoectateacher Ottawa! Send me the details of your contract once available. We need to start letting our members see these and know what to ask. Incorporating MOE is pure butt kissing. Otherwise? Local issues?

I'm with you, I would refuse to ratify on principle, especially with all our other teacher colleagues out on the street. Even with MOU attached as appendix it still is acknowledging it as the law, even if it technically isn't being voted on since it was already voted on by provincial for us and then passed into law by OLP Cons. Screw that nonsense. I myself am not interested in crafty excuses + undemocratic practices just coz somebody did an end run on us.

David Chiarelli said...

By the way, thanks for candidates list, whoever you are. I will include that in upcoming blog, probably with the PE and Cop votes too.

Anonymous said...

July 5, 2013 Provincial Executive Ratification Vote of the MOU -

Kevin O'Dwyer Absent
James Ryan Against
Chris Karuhanga In Favour
Ann Hawkins In Favour
Warren Grafton In Favour
Sonia DiPetta Against
Jeremy Cox In Favour
Andrew Donihee In Favour
Julie Pauletig Against

David Chiarelli said...

Thanks! These lists really help save a lot of headaches. I can cross reference for accuracy then cut and paste. Do you by any chance have COP like this too? I will put all together for a blog. Our members are going to need it to cut through all the b.s. asap. with contract votes an AGM 2012/ local unit votes. Most know nada.

Anonymous said...

I can analyze it as soon as I have an updated list of all the provincial election candidates for the AGM in March, 2013.A couple of the candidate names on your list were not on the executive list and not on the COP or absent from the latter- Reno Melatti is not listed on the minutes of either the executive meeting or the COP meetings in July and Jeremy Cox was absent from the COP meeting vote......

angryoectateacherOTTAWA said...

The Ottawa president voted against and is part of the OLRB 4! (Why only 4 units is the bigger question that needs to be asked.) Still, now telling members to ratify tentative agreement. Bill 115 to be attached to collective agreement. No Bill 115 or MOU wording incorporated. It is being emailed and marketed to us as 'gains made.' Not much in that dept either. There were about 300 or so and there was a congratulatory applause at the end. Looks like it WILL be ratified on Monday. Did someone say sheep? Beheh!

Anonymous said...

I think that the best way to publisize the July 10 COP vote may be just to list those who voted Against the MOU (generally the units representing major population centres)and know that all the others voted for it except those who were absent or alternately to post a blog with the entire voting results of that meeting listed on it. Please advise which is easier for you....Can work with what I have and take out just the vote results from the minutes of the July 10 cOP meeting.

Anonymous said...

I just hope there actually is a vote at the AGM! If our "democratic" leaders deprived us of a lawful ratification vote on the MOU back in July, why should we assume that we will be given a vote at the March AGM? I have lost my trust in their integrity altogether!

Anonymous said...

Our tentative agreement states that the MoU will be appended in its entirety to the Collective Agreement by operation of law. I vote "NO" in principle. Thanks for providing us with so much of what is happening out there. This is the place to come for info because it certainly is coming from Provincial.

Anonymous said...

Our tentative agreement states that the MoU will be appended in its entirety to the Collective Agreement by operation of law. I vote "NO" in principle. Thanks for providing us with so much of what is happening out there. This is the place to come for info because it certainly isn't coming from Provincial.

Anonymous said...

That the Council of Presidents endorse the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between OECTA and the Ministry of Education dated July 5, 2012.

The motion CARRIED with 42 in favour and 24 opposed.

This vote had no legal standing as the MOU had already been ratified.

David Chiarelli said...

COP Vote: This blog site is for the dissident teachers in that I, and most of the readers oppose Bill 115 and the MOU. For our OECTA members benefit and to simplify matters, just a list of those who voted against the MOU would be great. Our readers can figure out he rest quite easily enough. Thanks!

David Chiarelli said...

I can add the list of names of those who we know are running for office for the readers and ourselves to start researching now. Then a complete, confirmed list of who and how they voted can be published again. Our members need to start asking the candidates for office on the provincial executive questions now. This is great! Really appreciate any help! Whew!

Anonymous said...

Elaine McMahon, Ottawa president - against
Beth Dowe - Ottawa elementary - against

Anonymous said...

On the COP vote those who opposed:

Ottawa
Sudbury Elementary and Secondary
Toronto Elemenatary and Secondary
York
Durham Secondary
Halton Elementary and Secondary
Hamilton Elementary and Secondary
Niagara Elementary and Secondary
Brant, Haldimand, Norfolk
Huron Perth Elementary
St. Clair Secondary
Windsor Essex Elementary
Huron Superior

OTF Governors Reno Melatti, Michael Wozniak
PE Julie Pauletig, Sonia DiPetta

Anonymous said...

If your Unit President voted "YES" to the MOU ask him/her why?

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