Bargaining Update

Agreements imageA belated happy new year to all of our members.
Your Union executive council has been meeting with representatives of YP management over the last month to review new proposed compensation plans, as well as bargaining a new collective agreement.

This process continued with several very long and challenging bargaining sessions that took place in Toronto over the last 2 days. We are pleased to inform the membership that we have reached a tentative deal between COPE 131 and YP. We will be meeting again next week with YP representatives to iron out some final logistics, and at that point we will be updating the membership on next steps, which will include meeting dates and times where we will convene to review all the information and recommend the ratification of a new Collective Agreement.

As we are sure you are all aware, 2018 was a very challenging year in terms of labour relations, most notably with the lock-out of our brother and sister members in Quebec. COPE/SEPB Local 574 has since ratified a new agreement and returned to work, but it is fair to say that we had great concern about the impact these events would have on our own negotiations. It is important for our members to know that despite the challenging nature of the discussions, both sides conducted bargaining in a respectful and professional manner, which allowed us to reach the tentative agreement we will be sharing with you shortly.

We would like to particularly thank the following members who stepped up to participate in bargaining and whose assistance was invaluable: Kerig Ahearn, Dan Christie, Daniel Hunter, Julia Shaw, and Jason Ware.

An update will follow next week.

In Solidarity,

Rick Miller, Staff Representative COPE Ontario
Steve Reeves, President, COPE Local 131

Union official calls lockout of 130 Yellow Pages workers “disgraceful”

YPcanada logoThe following is a copy of a report on the Quebec lockout as reported in the Ottawa citizen, a link to the original article is here: Ottawa Citizen

MONTREAL — A union official is denouncing the lockout of 130 sales representatives by Yellow Pages Ltd. on Monday night as “disgraceful” and “a complete surprise”.

Christian Leonard, head of the affected unit in the Canadian Office and Professional Employees union, says the move is designed to break the union and try to obtain concessions.

Leonard says Yellow Pages has not presented the union with a final offer and he would not provide details about demands presented by either side.

Seeking a strike mandate is on the agenda of a general assembly on Thursday.

The Montreal-based company said Monday it had no choice but to impose a lockout, accusing the union of being inflexible.

The company announced a plan in January to cut roughly 500 jobs across Canada in an effort to reduce spending and improve its results amid lower digital and print revenues.

COPE Local 131 supports the efforts of our brothers and sisters from COPE/SEPB 574 and encourages the management of Yellow Pages to return to the table in order to bargain a fair and equitable Collective Agreement.

Update on Quebec Labour Dispute

YPcanada logoThere will be a conference call this afternoon to update members of COPE Local 131 on the ongoing labour dispute in Quebec, where Yellow Pages has locked out approximately 130 of our colleagues from COPE/SEPB Local 574.
September 10, 2018 Yellow Pages Lockout Press Release.

The conference call will take place at 5pm, call-in information is as follows:
In the GTA: 416-933-3851, Long Distance: 1-855-331-8822
Conference ID 6739731#

UPDATE on January 2018 Lay-offs

As we are sorting through the documentation that was issued to all of our members who were affected by the lay-offs that took place last week it has become clear that there was a under-calculation for those members with 5 years or more service time.calculator

To be clear, service time is not rounded up, so if your service time on the day of the layoff was 4 years and 11 months, this does not affect you. There is no rounding up of service time for any of the affected members nationwide.

For those members who had at least 5 full years of service time or more on the date of the layoff (January 16, 2018) the letters that you would have received outlining the TOTAL number of weeks of severance you were due, were short by two (2) weeks. This is owed to a provision of our collective agreement that required 2 weeks of notice or 2 weeks of pay in lieu of notice for members with a minimum of 5 years of service.

The following examples will apply to all of the affected members depending if you fall into the over 5 years or over 10 years categories:

  1. Over 5 years but less than 10 years of service: Your calculation is based on a multiplier of two (2) weeks per full year of service + 2 weeks in lieu of notice.
    So if you were a 7 year employee (for example) your severance would be 14 weeks (7 x 2) + 2 weeks in lieu of notice for a TOTAL of 16 weeks of severance. You may have received a letter only outlining the 14 weeks of severance. This will be corrected and a new letter will be sent to you via mail.
  2. Over 10 years of service: Your calculation is based on a multiplier of three (3) weeks per full year of service [To a maximum of 75 weeks] + 2 weeks in lieu of notice.
    So if you were a 14 year employee (for example) your severance would be 42 weeks (14 x 3) + 2 weeks in lieu of notice for a TOTAL of 44 weeks of severance. You may have received a letter only outlining the 42 weeks of severance. This will be corrected and a new letter will be sent to you via mail.

Please remember that these are examples for the purposes of explaining calculations only. Please use the above formulas in conjunction with your number of full years of service to arrive at your own personal calculation. In general, all of the letters and calculations for those with over 5 years of service had the same error, so it is safe to assume that if you are an over 5 year employee you will be receiving an additional 2 weeks more than your letter stated based on the examples shown above.


Yellow Pages Lay-Offs, 500 employees affected.

As many of you are now aware, Yellow Pages has laid off approximately 500 employeesAnnouncement-Clipart Canada-wide in an effort to reduce costs in the face of declining revenues. The official press release is located here: Yellow Pages Restructuring announcement

For more information you can search any major Canadian media outlet online, they all have copies of the announcement and commentary and opinion on what it means to the company overall.

In the Ontario region we experienced the closure of all of our
Acquisition and Retention departments affecting roughly 60 people in our group.

As well, many of our colleagues and friends from management, clerical and administrative departments were affected by the restructuring.

Representatives for COPE were present at the meetings yesterday to support our members and to ensure that the provisions of the collective agreement are being upheld throughout this trying and unfortunate time. We will continue to monitor the situation and stay in touch with our members to provide any relevant updates.

For those of you affected, we wish you the best of luck in future endeavours and thank you wholeheartedly for your membership and support.

The Union Council of COPE Local 131

Results of Voting COPE 131

survey checkHere is your voting update for July 12, 2017:

Thank you to all the members who participated in our vote yesterday. We had a great turnout rate for our first electronic vote.

The results are as follows:

1. On the Extension of our current agreement until June 30, 2018, the membership has voted YES to ratify and extend our agreement

2. On the constitutional amendments, the membership has voted YES to ratify.

3. On the proposed $1.00 increase to bi-weekly dues,
the membership has voted YES to ratify and accept the increase.

Thank you once again for attending all the conference calls and meetings and demonstrating your support and solidarity.

The Union Council of COPE Local 131