- According to the Canadian Union of Public Employees, the New Brunswick government will delay back pay for thousands of workers.
- According to Drost, the province requested an extension from four union locals still owed money, who said they were informed of the delay on March 1.
The New Brunswick government will delay back pay for thousands of workers indicated by the Canadian Union of Public Employees.
According to CUPE, the government must process retroactive payouts within 90 days of the ratification of their agreements.
Approximately 3,500 active employees will be delayed in receiving their retroactive pay.
CUPE New Brunswick president Stephen Drost stated, “We’re calling all our leaders in CUPE national to look at all legal remedies to challenge this.”
According to Drost, the province requested an extension from four union locals still awaiting payment, who said the delay was communicated on March 1.
“This employer was well aware that they had a major task ahead of them, which they had not prioritized. We’ve learned that they haven’t even started calculating for a few of these large groups, “Drost stated.
“These agreements were signed in early December, but the ratification took place in November.”
“There are roughly 22,000 employees whose retroactive pay has been or will be paid within the 90-day timeline,” said Erika Jutras of the finance and treasury board in a statement.
The province added that a large number of workers has resulted in an unusually heavy workload for payroll officers, who must complete separate manual retroactive pay calculations for thousands of employees.
Jutras went on to say, “Additional time is required due to the high volume of transactions and to ensure accuracy. We’re working hard to process all retro-pay transactions as quickly as possible, and we’ve set aside additional resources to help.”
On the other hand, Drost questions why resources were not allocated to back pay as soon as contracts were ratified.
“I want to be clear: none of our employees are unhappy with the people at payroll,” he said.
“We’re angry at a government that didn’t ensure that resources were available to address these problems.”
When COVID-19 outbreaks occurred, Drost said, union members were asked to assist in ways other than their regular responsibilities.
“They could have brought in people from other departments to help with this major [back pay] task,” he said.
The breakdown of back pay processing
The province provided a summary for back pay processing for various locals.
Retroactive payments, for example, have been processed on time for:
- Local members of CUPE 1840, court stenographers, and Crown prosecutors.
- Workers at Vitalité Health Network, Horizon Health Network, and Ambulance New Brunswick are represented by Local 1252, part of the New Brunswick Council of Hospital Unions.
On the other hand, locals 1190, 1251, and 1418 are still working on adjusting their pay rates. These organizations are paid at negotiated rates.
Tradespeople and repair workers, correctional officers, human service workers, laundry and custodial workers, and rehabilitation and therapy workers work in these locals.
Local 2745, which represents nearly 4,400 educational as well as clerical support workers, will receive retroactive payments in April.
Source: Global News
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