Nunavut Employees Union Government of Nunavut Bargaining Update #8 August 2020
The struggle to achieve a fair collective agreement with the Government of Nunavut (GN) continues. It is hard to believe and accept that we have not communicated anything since March 2020. But, in light of the global COVID-19 pandemic and the additional stresses it is placing on Nunavut Employees Union (NEU) Members, the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) North/NEU Bargaining Team contacted the GN Team to determine whether there was any interest engaging in informal, without prejudice* discussions in an attempt to break the current impasse in Bargaining. The GN accepted the Bargaining Team’s invitation and the two teams met remotely on June 3rd and 4th, 2020. These without prejudice discussions were unsuccessful. Your Bargaining Team continued to demonstrate a willingness to make significant moves from our outstanding positions in order to conclude an agreement. We have done this throughout all Bargaining Sessions - formal and informal. The goal was to focus on:
- The Nunavut Northern Allowance, and
- Domestic violence leave.
After two days it became clear that the GN was not going to address the issues or your Team’s sincere efforts to reach a fair agreement and break this unacceptable impasse in any meaningful way. Your Bargaining Team understood that we needed to withdraw from these without prejudice discussion with the GN.
Your Team is as frustrated as you are with the delays in reaching a fair agreement that would provide you with some measure of security during these difficult times. Nevertheless, we are certain that in order to get that fair agreement, we will need to stay the course and allow the Nunavut Court of Justice to rule on the NEU’s Bad Faith Bargaining Complaint against the GN
. That will require time. As always, when we have any news or updates on the court proceedings or any other related news, we will communicate them to you as soon as is possible.
* The purpose of a without prejudice meeting is to encourage parties to a dispute to try and reach a settlement by allowing them and their legal advisers to speak freely and make concessions knowing that their words cannot be used against them later in court if the negotiations fail to achieve settlement.
Your PSAC-North/NEU Bargaining Team
Noel Collins, Simon Doiron, Linda Hunter, Ruth Kaluraq, Abe Qammaniq, Rick Roberts, William (Bill) Fennell (NEU President), Darren Pacione (PSAC Researcher), and John Eustace (PSAC Negotiator)