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Federal Gov't - Interpretation of Call Back (Article 28.01)

Feb 24, 2011

We are currently at odds with the Treasury Board Secretariat over the interpretation of Article 28.01 (Call-back).

The article in question reads as follows:

If … an employee is called back to work and returns to work prior to his or her next regular scheduled work period for a period of overtime the employee shall be entitled to the greater of:

(a) compensation at the applicable overtime rate for any time worked, or
(b) compensation equivalent to four (4) hours' pay at the straight-time rate.

Our interpretation is that an employee is entitled to a minimum 4-hour payment each and every time the employer calls an employee back to work.  The employer is taking the position that they are required to pay only once in a given four-hour period.

This clause is very clear and we are at a loss to understand the employer’s logic.  They are refusing to pay a second four hour premium, for a second call back, in the same time period as the first call back. To be clear, if an employee is called back to work within a 4-hour period for two different reasons, they are clearly entitled to two call-back payments.

Adding to the confusion is the range of reasons provided to the union.  One member received two different reasons for the denial of his grievance.  The responses at the first two levels of the grievance procedure were significantly different.  One can just imagine what other reason will be conjured up to deny the grievances at the third level.

Please remember that regardless of what may have been said and by whom, the words in our collective agreement are clear: one payment per call-back.  If you are experiencing difficulty with this clause I strongly advise you to contact this office, your local shop steward and file a grievance immediately.

In Solidarity,

Paul Cameron
Assistant Business Manager