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Government of Canada and public service unions announce compensation for federal employees impacted

Canada's public servants deserve to be paid properly for their important work and the Government of Canada continues to take action on all fronts to resolve Phoenix pay issues.

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Publication date : 2019-05-03
PSAC rejects compensation offer for Phoenix pay fiasco, other groups accept
PSAC rejects compensation offer for Phoenix pay fiasco, other groups accept

The federal government says it has reached a tentative deal with some groups on compensation for workers affected by problems with the Phoenix pay system. But the Public Service Alliance of Canada, which represents the majority of federal employees, has rejected the offer.

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Publication date : 2019-05-03
Applying the Jordan framework: Are courts placing too much of the burden on the defence?
Applying the Jordan framework: Are courts placing too much of the burden on the defence?

In R v. Jordan, the Supreme Court put a hard cap on the duration of criminal trials — sending a thrill of panic through the justice system in the process. The ruling is roughly two and a half years old now. Time for the training wheels to come off.Now, that backlog of pre-Jordan charges has been largely cleared — the transitional period is over. But Crown and defence lawyers alike report that trial times aren’t speeding up; statistics cited in a recent Law Times article show that in the Ontario Court of Justice, average times to disposition and the number of court appearances have not diminished since Jordan. If the SCC intended the ruling as a salutary shock to the system, it didn’t work.So what happens now?

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Publication date : 2018-12-18
RCMP’s forensic firearm testing backlog adding delays to justice system

The RCMP’s forensics labs are taking nearly four times longer to analyze firearms than they did just four years ago, adding delays to a criminal justice system under pressure to speed up after a recent Supreme Court decision.

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Publication date : 2018-12-16
Court delays persist, despite Jordan
Court delays persist, despite Jordan

The Supreme Court of Canada decision in Jordanand the problems it tried to address are still top of mind in the criminal courts in Ontario nearly two-and-a-half years after it was released.

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Publication date : 2018-12-03
The performance pay saga reaches a settlement
The performance pay saga reaches a settlement

The issue is the prorating of performance pay in relation to pre-promotion period for the year in which lawyers are promoted. If a lawyer was eligible for performance pay and was promoted during the year, the Employer, rather than pay out a prorated performance pay for the period pre-promotion, paid out nothing at all regardless of your performance rating for the year. The AJC originally filed a grievance in 2011 and in response to that grievance, TB had conceded in the context of the adjudication hearing that pre-promotion service should be recognized. Unfortunately, the adjudicator originally disregarded TB's concession in his decision of 2015, requiring the AJC to file an application for judicial review, which eventually resulted on December 22, 2016 in a remedy limited to the right to pre-promotion performance pay for the year 2010-2011. Thus, the AJC filed another policy grievance on July 27th 2016. The hearing was scheduled for October 2018. We are pleased to announce that we now have a signed Memorandum of Settlement on this matter with TB.  

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Publication date : 2018-10-30

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Lawyers: the special law is filed, the negotiations are suspended


The President of the Treasury Board, Pierre Moreau Photo: Radio-Canada / Mathieu Dion


According to the law, the 1,100 lawyers and notaries in all government departments and agencies will have to be on Wednesday at 8:30 am They will have to stop participating in the current strike, or face sanctions.


The special law does not address the demands of their union, the lawyers and notaries of the State of Quebec (LANEQ), which deal with parity with Crown attorneys. However, a section is given to the negotiations. They must continue "in good faith, for a maximum period of 45 days".


The bargaining period may be extended by the Minister of Labor only once at the request of LANEQ and the government. However, the extension period can not last more than 15 days. In total, the parties have 105 days to reach an agreement.


In the absence of an agreement, both sides can agree on the appointment of a mediator who will have 30 days to settle the dispute. The appointment of a conciliator may also be granted.


In the event of failure, the collective agreement, which expired on March 31, 2015, will be renewed until 2020 when the Minister releases the mediator's report.


The government would then renew the proposals for salary increases already granted to the Common Front of the public sector, ie 5.25% over five years, but withdraw its offer of an additional 2% that it had previously proposed for 2019-2020. The legislation also provides an amount of $ 0.30 for each hour paid between April 2015 and March 31, 2016, and $ 0.16 for each hour paid between April 2019 and March 31, 2020.


Treasury Board President Pierre Moreau said in a press briefing that the 2% salary increase had been withdrawn because it was linked to concessions from the union side, but he added that could be discussed again at the table.


Hours of debate


The debate on the principle of the bill began at night in the National Assembly and continued throughout the night. The question period was rough. The vote on the principle took place at 4 pm, before proceeding to the detailed study of the special law. The final vote is scheduled for Tuesday at around 2 pm


"No one likes to impose constraints or impose them. We did not choose a special law. LANEQ's conduct challenged us to make a special law. The uncompromising attitude of LANEQ did not leave us the choice, "said Pierre Moreau, President of the Treasury Board.


                      "It is not easy for me to introduce the bill ensuring the continuity of the provision of legal services in the government."

                              - Pierre Moreau, President of the Treasury Board


Justice Minister Stephanie Vallée has argued that the conflict affects access to justice and causes delays in some cases.


Pierre Moreau assured that the employer's salary offer, at $ 116,000 per year, offers parity with Crown attorneys, as requested by LANEQ.


Opposition parties have strongly criticized the Liberal government's attitude during the four-month negotiations. The Coalition avenir Québec (CAQ) has already announced that it will vote against the special law.


                    " It is liberal intransigence at its climax. The government's trademark is imposing, gagging."

                              - Alain Therrien, Parti Québécois critic for the economy


Treasury Board President Pierre Moreau has responded to critics of opposition parties who accuse him of not speaking to lawyers. "I met the LANEQ president three times at his request. There have been negotiations for two years, there have been six offers of the government, "he defended.


"Amateur work" according to LANEQ


LANEQ called the law text "amateurish". "Not only has the government forgotten to include the 180 Revenue lawyers currently on strike, but it has omitted the third-party dispute resolution mechanism that is now mandatory for any back-to-work legislation," said the president. union, Jean Denis.


LANEQ announced in the evening that it would challenge the future law, until the Supreme Court if necessary.


The Barreau and the Chambre des notaires du Québec have repeatedly asked the government to use mediation, rather than adopt a special law. They suggested appointing a neutral mediator, but the government refuses. "The parties should make every effort to avoid the special law," says the batonière du Québec, Claudia Prémont.


The president of the Chamber of Notaries, Gérard Guay, fears for him that the work climate is escalating. "It is obvious that a special law, to be imposed that, it will necessarily disrupt the work of the jurists of the State. Everyone recognizes it, even the minister, that they have an important job. "


The parties left the negotiating table after two hours of talks on Monday afternoon. The government and lawyers say they are ready to negotiate 24 hours a day. LANEQ says it is waiting for a call from the government.


Their disputes are mainly about the status of the state's lawyers. They want parity with independent crown attorneys. But Minister Pierre Moreau has already said that it was not possible.