The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and the Union of Taxation Employees (UTE) of the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) jointly recognize the importance of good union-management relations. They have a shared interest in working together to support a healthy and productive workplace and ensuring that the public continues to receive quality service. Therefore the parties are establishing the National Union-Management Consultation Committee (NUMCC). In addition, local and regional union-management committees will also be established and will be consistent with these terms of reference. However, local Union-Management Committees will meet four times a year, or as required
The NUMCC allows meaningful consultation and dialogue between the parties at the national level on an ongoing basis.
The NUMCC provides a valuable forum for both union and management to meet, to have free and open exchanges, and to ensure a better understanding of the key issues and developments within the organization.
The NUMCC members will work together to find workable solutions and resolve differences, recognizing that at times they may need to agree to disagree.
The NUMCC will focus on issues having national implications or involving the strategic direction of the Agency, as well as local/regional issues that may have not been resolved through the Referral Process (as described below).
Urgent issues having a national scope may be added to the NUMCC agenda at any time with the agreement of the co-chairs. However, extensive discussion may not be possible at the meeting due to insufficient advance notice and ability to research the issue.
Issues related to the following subject matters will not be discussed at the committee level:
collective agreements and statutory provisions; or
issues for which other formal redress mechanisms have been established (i.e. grievances, human rights complaints).
Issues for which other formal channels of consultation have been established would be addressed through those forums. However, there may be exceptions, as agreed to by the parties.
The parties are committed to fulfilling commitments made at the NUMCC.
The consultation meetings will be conducted in an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust.
The parties will play an active and important role in the consultation process and recognize the equality of the parties within the consultation process.
In their dealings with each other, the parties are committed to:
Sharing information and having frank and open discussions;
Being open to the ideas of others and appreciating the different points of view; and
Being constructive, fair, sensitive, courteous and professional.
Consultation is a process of exchanging information and obtaining views and advice on issues relating to the workplace that affect employees. It should take place when changes are being contemplated and should begin at the earliest opportunity, prior to decisions being taken to ensure that the comments or concerns of key stakeholders are seriously considered. This will also include involving the parties in the development of related issues, policies and guidelines, as agreed to by the parties. It will not diminish management’s legal authority and obligation to manage or the union’s legal rights established by legislation, collective agreements or conditions of employment.
Existing Consultation Forums:
The parties agree to interact through the various forums already in place such as ad hoc meetings, working groups and various committees. This approach supports frequent and meaningful consultation at the local, regional and national levels. It allows the parties to meet and discuss initiatives of mutual interest, to identify potential workplace issues and to explore potential solutions.
To strengthen the spirit of co-operation and mutual trust, union and management agree to have a two-tiered approach to consultation:
Confined Consultation: During this stage, the issues for consultation will be restricted to certain identified representatives and will not be disclosed further. This will provide a forum to ascertain the full implications of those actions on the legitimate interests of both parties, allowing for the meaningful dialogue and identification of potential outcomes. It will encourage consultation at an early stage in the developmental process and will provide an opportunity for disclosure of contemplated actions or changes to key stakeholders.
Broad Consultation: During this stage, open consultation with all the various stakeholders will take place on contemplated actions or changes, prior to decisions being taken, and may be the subject of the various consultation forums, including the Union-Management Consultation Committee.
It is in the best interest of all parties to resolve issues at the lowest possible level, where appropriate. Consequently, the parties agree to promote and adhere to the following process to ensure that issues/concerns are dealt with in a timely and efficient manner.
The parties will make every concerted effort to discuss and resolve issues at the lowest possible level. Only when union-management consultation has failed to resolve the issue should the matter be raised at the next level, i.e. local/ regional/ national.
Unresolved issues being referred to the national level should be transmitted to the National Union President, and to the Director, Labour Relations, for review and consideration.
An issue that remains unresolved at the national level may be added to the NUMCC meeting agenda in a further attempt to resolve the matter, as long as there is sufficient advance notice and it is accompanied by supporting documentation. This will allow the other party to conduct enough research to allow for meaningful discussion.
COMPOSITION OF THE NATIONAL UNION-MANAGEMENT CONSULTATION COMMITTEE
- Assistant Commissioner (Human Resources Branch)
- Functional Assistant Commissioners
- Finance and Administration Branch
- Revenue Collection Branch
- Assessment and Client Services Branch
- All Regional Assistant Commissioners
- Director General, Staff Relations and Compensation
- Director, Labour Relations
- National President
- 2 National Vice-Presidents
- 10 Regional Vice-Presidents
- Executive Assistant to the National President
- Administrative Assistant to the National President
Each committee member may select an alternate to serve as his or her replacement when he or she is unable to perform his or her functions.
Additional persons may be invited as technical or special advisor, or subject matter experts, provided the co-chairs of the committee agree in advance. Guests should speak only on the agenda items for which they are invited, and shall not participate in unrelated discussions on other agenda items.
The Union President and the Commissioner will be the co-chairs and will rotate chairing of the meetings.
The co-chairs will identify an alternate to act on their behalf should they not be available.
Frequency of Meetings
Committee meetings will take place twice a year. Additional meetings may be organized as required. The specific time and dates of committee meetings will be mutually agreed upon and will normally be scheduled during working hours.
The Labour Relations Division will send the notices of upcoming meetings and requests for agenda items to all committee members, at least seven weeks prior to the meeting.
The Labour Relations Division will prepare the agenda.
Agenda items will be sufficiently explicit and exchanged well enough in advance of the meeting so that both parties may adequately prepare for the meeting.
Each item placed on the agenda should be researched so that discussions will flow smoothly at the meeting. This research may include inviting someone to the meeting who is not a regular member of the committee, but who has specialized or specific knowledge of an item to be discussed.
Meetings will be conducted in accordance with the provisions of the Official Languages Act.
The minutes will be prepared by the Labour Relations Division in both official languages and will be signed by both co-chairs. The Labour Relations Division will endeavour to have the minutes prepared in 60 days.
The CRA and the Union will do their own distribution. Also, the minutes will be posted by the CRA on the InfoZone.
TECHNOLOGICAL CHANGE SUB-COMMITTEE
The National Technological Change Sub-Committee will continue to meet regularly to discuss specific issues related to technological change.
LEAVE AND TRAVEL TIME FOR COMMITTEE MEETINGS
The participants will be granted leave with pay to attend the committee meetings and for related travel time.
MONITORING AND AMENDMENTS
At the request of either party, the co-chairs of Union-Management Consultation Committee may meet to assess the effectiveness of these Terms of Reference or may request the review and/or amendment of these Terms of Reference.
|Original signed by||Original signed by|
|Michel Dorais||Betty Bannon|
|December 8, 2005||December 8, 2005|