Equal Opportunities Committee

Management-Union Consultations on Employment Equity

January 20, 2011

Management-Union Consultations
on Employment Equity

DATE:January 20, 2011

TIME: 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.


200 Laurier, 4th Floor Boardroom


Management Reps

Robina Canaran
Diane Desrochers
Linda Johnson
Bonnie Lehman
Leanne Given


Linda Cassidy
Shawn Bergeron
Robin Johnson
Cindy Little


Marie Danièle Gervais

Highlights of Discussion:

1. Strategic Direction for Employment Equity for 2010-2011 to 2012-2013

  • Management indicated that the Strategic Direction for Employment Equity, which was approved by the Board of Management in June 2010, represents the Agency’s strategic plan for building a representative workplace.  Management also updated the Unions on the process used to develop this document, highlighting the extensive consultations that took place.
  • Management indicated that they were pleased with the extent and format of the consultations, the quality feedback received by all stakeholders, and also the fact that Unions had been engaged closer to the front-end of the process, during the in-person consultations with members of the National Advisory Committees for Employment Equity. 
  • In terms of putting the plan in motion, Management pointed out that this responsibility rests with the regions and branches.  Regions and Branches use the Strategic Direction, along with the results of the regional workforce analysis as the basis for developing their respective Employment Equity Action Plans.
  • The Employment Equity Division will continue to monitor the Agency’s progress through the CRA’s annual Workforce Analysis Exercise and Annual EE Report to Parliament.

2. Workforce Analysis as of March 31, 2010

  • Although electronic copies of the Workforce Analysis (WFA) as of March 31, 2010 were already shared with the Unions earlier in the year (late June 2010), Management provided a summary of the workforce analysis results.
  • For the seventh consecutive year, each of the four designated groups continues to be fully representative at the national, Agency wide level (with representation continuing to surpass labour market availability). 
  • While there are some areas of under-representation at the occupational group level, these are being addressed.  
  • Management asked the Unions if the summary information provided was useful (given that the detailed statistics were already communicated to unions in June via email).  The Unions indicated that this type of dialogue was valuable and suggested that these summaries continue to be provided in the future meetings.

Question: The UTE enquired about the coding of MG-03 and MG-04 jobs.  In one of the hand-outs, a description of each of the major employment equity occupational groups (EEOG) was provided.  According to the narrative text provided, some MG-04 jobs fall within EEOG-02 (Middle and Other Managers) and some MG-03 jobs are coded under EEOG 05 (Supervisors). The question posed by UTE was with respect to the use of the word “some.” Specifically, the question was whether there were some MG-04 and some MG-03 jobs that were coded to another EEOG. Management indicated that the EE Division would look into this and respond accordingly.

3. CRA Annual EE Report for 2009-2010

  • Management indicated that the Annual EE Report for 2009-2010 was submitted to Treasury Board Secretariat on September 30, 2010, as per the legislative requirements of the Employment Equity Act. 
  • The President of the TB will table the report to Parliament along with the EE reports for the rest of the public service. Although the timing of this has not been confirmed, this generally takes place towards the end of March every year. 
  • Until then, the report is considered a confidential document and it can not be shared/distributed.  However once tabled in Parliament, the report will be posted on the InfoZone and Internet and distributed to the Unions and to other stakeholders.

4. Regional EE Action Plans and Reports

  • Management indicated that regions are responsible for operationalizing the Strategic Direction for Employment Equity and they do that through the development of their respective Employment Equity Action Plans (where specific goals and objectives are established).
  • Management indicated that while all regions plans now have a three-year forward outlook, they are updated and refreshed annually, based on the annual regional workforce analysis.
  • Regions report on their progress in achieving established EE goals and objectives through their annual EE Reports.
  • The EE Division uses the information contained in the Regional EE reports to develop part of the content of CRA’s Annual EE Report.

Question: The UTE asked whether regions had fulfilled their responsibilities and submitted their EE Action Plans and Reports to the EE Division. Management confirmed that they had.

5. National Advisory Committees (NAC’s) Video-conference with the Commissioner – November 5, 2010

  • Management indicated that since the Chairs and Co-Chairs of the National Advisory Committees were unable to meet with the Commissioner, in January 2010 (during the Strategic Direction consultations), a video-conference meeting was organized in November 2010.
  • The purpose of this meeting was to provide the Chairs and Co-Chairs an opportunity to share with our Commissioner what they considered to be some of the positive achievements, key priorities, challenges and opportunities for the four designated groups, and propose recommendations for the future.
  • There was no expectation for the Commissioner to commit to any of the recommendations put forward during these meetings.  Rather, these meetings are intended to be more of an interactive exchange.
  • Overall, the meeting went well.  The Commissioner was very much engaged and was impressed by the calibre of presentations. 
  • Management provided a brief summay of each of the NAC presentations and indicated that summary notes of the meeting (including next steps) still have to be developed and will subsequently be shared as appropriate. 

6. Self-Identification promotional efforts and results

  • The Canadian Human Rights Commission requires organizations to have an 80% self-ID participation rate in order for their workforce analysis results to be considered valid.
  • Management indicated that our Commissioner has been issuing an annual communiqué to all employees, promoting self-ID and encouraging all employees to complete the workforce profile survey. These promotional efforts have been very successful.
  • On March 15, 2010, pre Commissioner’s message, we had a national participation rate of 82.3% and after the Commissioner’s message, as of March 31, 2010, we had a participation rate of 86.0%. The year previous, we had the same positive response – prior to the Commissioner’s message, the participation rate was at 80.4%, and post Commissioner’s message, it was at 83.5%.
  • As management pointed out, national self-identification rates have increased by 6% over the last two years, and clearly, the Commissioner’s message complemented by regional, branch and union promotional efforts are producing results. 
  • Management asked for the unions’ ongoing support in promoting the importance of self-identification among their members.

7. Learning Products

  1. E-Aboriginal Awareness

    • Management indicated that the electronic Aboriginal Awareness course was developed in 2009-2010 and launched formally towards the beginning of April 2010.  Positive feedback was received on the quality and comprehensiveness of this product. 

    • In developing this product, the EE Division engaged numerous stakeholders.  Management thanked the Unions for their valuable input and asked for their support in promoting this newly developed tool.

  2. Aboriginal Awareness Facilitator’s Guide

    • Management indicated that the Employment Equity Division is now leading the development of a facilitator’s guide to complement the e-product, and the plan is to finalize and roll-out this product over the next year.  The Unions will be consulted on this tool. 

  3. Workplace Accommodation for Designated Group Members

    • Management indicated that the EE Division developed an online learning product on Workplace Accommodation for Designated Group Members and this product was launched in the spring 2010.

    • Similar to the e-Aboriginal awareness product, extensive consultations with various stakeholders took place towards developing this learning tool, and again, Management thanked the Unions for their valuable contributions.

    • Management indicated that this product has been extremely well received. In fact, a number of departments have already approached the CRA, asking if they could use the product for their own training and learning purposes. 

8. UTE suggestion regarding a breast-feeding policy

  • The UTE explained that there is currently a grievance at the 4th level in the Ontario Region with respect to breast-feeding in the workplace. They suggested that a policy or communiqué be developed and issued to sensitize managers to women’s right to breast-feed. 

  • The UTE would be willing to share options/solutions to deal with this matter.

  • Labour Relations indicated that they would identify the stakeholders who should be involved in researching this matter further.