About NOSM Education Research Communities

Media Release


NOSM’s Offer Fair and Competitive

The Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) is disappointed that the OPSEU Staff Unit members rejected the tentative collective agreement that was mutually agreed to by NOSM and the OPSEU Staff Unit negotiating teams earlier this month.

NOSM is confident that the tentative collective agreement contained terms that were fair and equitable, and responded effectively to the issues raised by the OPSEU Staff Unit at the bargaining table.

The rejected offer provides for a respectful and healthy work environment, and is consistent with the provisions found in other Ontario university sector collective agreements, and with the principles and approaches of agreements at NOSM’s host universities (Laurentian University and Lakehead University).

Included in the offer is a competitive wage and benefits package with an across-the-board wage increase of 3.25% in the first year of a three year agreement (retroactive to May 1, 2009) and a one-time lump sum payment of $1,500, which is equivalent to more than a 3% increase to the average annual bargaining unit salary.

NOSM’s offer complies with the Ontario government’s policy statements that specify “new collective agreements will be of at least two years duration and provide no net increase in compensation for at least two years.” The government’s fiscal plan provides no funding to NOSM for incremental compensation increases for new collective agreements.

Other OPSEU locals at other university and broader sector employers have recently negotiated new collective agreements which comply with the government’s policy of no net increases for two years.

While both NOSM and the OPSEU Staff Unit recognize the difficulty compensation restraint policy has brought to the bargaining table, both parties are aware that the compensation restraint legislation has resulted in the wages for non-union staff members being frozen for three years. Non-union staff did not receive an increase in 2009 pending OPSEU Staff Unit bargaining, and were subsequently impacted by the government wage freeze legislation.

Additional terms of the rejected agreement follow this release, and are posted on the School’s website at www.nosm.ca.

Since the OPSEU Staff Unit members have rejected the tentative agreement brought forward by their Union negotiators, the parties will need to explore new options to ensure a timely resolution to this dispute.

NOSM remains committed to reaching a first collective agreement with the OPSEU Staff Unit which fairly reflects the unique nature of NOSM and its workforce and that will work for everyone – putting learners first, and addressing fairness and equity within available fiscal resources.
 

Key Terms of NOSM’s Rejected Offer   

The Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) has offered the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) Staff Unit a three-year collective agreement which provides employees with a fair and equitable competitive compensation program, benefits, and work entitlements.   

 

Terms 

         Details and Clarification 

NEW – Introduction of Labour Management Committee 

  • NOSM has introduced a robust Labour Management Committee; an open and transparent joint committee where several items in the collective agreement are mandated to be addressed including workload; compressed work weeks/flex-time; self-funded leave; and professional development expenditures. 
 

Recognition of Existing Practices 

  • NOSM has agreed to give notice of any changes or discontinuance of working conditions not covered by the collective agreement to the OPSEU Staff Unit in order that the Union has the opportunity to bring any issues to the Labour Management Committee for consideration. 
 

Sick Leave and Family Leaves for Regular Full Time Employees 

   

   

 

  • Regular full time employees would continue to receive six months of 100% paid sick leave per illness. 
  • Regular full time employees would continue to receive flexible arrangements for the benefit of families including pregnancy, parental and paternity leaves. In addition, NOSM will continue to provide maternity/parental leave supplemental unemployment benefits.  
 

Four Special Leave Days  

  • Regular full time employees would continue to be eligible for four (4) special leave days per calendar year for personal, compassionate or emergency reasons. 
 

Benefits for Regular Full Time Employees 

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

  

  • NOSM’s regular full time employees would continue to receive benefits effective from the first day of employment, including the following: 
    • Three weeks vacation upon hire (with an additional week entitlement granted after 7 years and after 15 years). 
    • 100% employer-paid life insurance.  
    • 100% employer-paid extended health care (including vision, hearing, para-medical, drugs).  
    • 75% employer/25% employee dental plan.  
    • A defined contribution pension plan.  
    • An extra paid week of time off between Christmas and New Year’s Day. 
 

NEW – Benefits for Regular Part Time Employees  

  • Regular part time employees who regularly work at least 20 hours a week would have the option of participating in NOSM’s benefits plan.   
 

NEW – Compassionate Care Benefits 

   

  • NOSM has introduced supplemental compassionate care benefits for regular employees in receipt of employment insurance compassionate leave benefits.    
 

Tuition Reimbursement   

   

   

  • NOSM’s regular full time employees would continue to be entitled to payment of tuition fees at Lakehead University and Laurentian University for eligible employees, their spouses and dependents (under the age of 26) (consistent with host universities’ policies, maximum $4,000 per year with lifetime maximum of $20,000 per eligible individual at West Campus; no current cap at East Campus). 
 

General Wage Increase of 3.25% in First Year of Three Year Agreement, Followed by 0% Wage Increases in Years Two and Three 

  • OPSEU Staff Unit employees would receive an increase of 3.25% effective retroactively to May 1, 2009, followed by two years of a “zero” (0%) compensation increase. 

Note:  NOSM’s executive, management and bargaining-excluded employees will not get a pay increase for three years. 

 

One Time Lump Sum Payment of $1500  

  • In addition to the general wage increase in year one of the agreement, NOSM Staff Unit employees would receive a one-time lump sum payment of $1500. 
  • This one time lump sum payment is in recognition of transitional issues resulting from the implementation of the collective agreement, including any new scheduling changes (see below). 

Note:  The wage increases and payment offered by NOSM complies with the Ontario government’s policy statements that specify “new collective agreements will be of at least two years duration and provide no net increase in compensation for at least two years.”  

 

NEW – Ability to Schedule Hours of Work to Meet Operational Needs  

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

 

  • In recognition of the School’s need to meet the needs of physicians, health professionals, and NOSM’s learners, the proposed agreement includes the ability to schedule work outside of normal work hours with no less than four weeks’ notice and the introduction of a new phased in shift premium ($3.00/hour from date of ratification to April 30, 2011; $1.50/hour for hours worked from Monday to Friday, and $2.00/hour for hours worked on a weekend from May 1, 2011 to March 31, 2012; and, $1.00/hour for hours worked from Monday to Friday and $1.50/hour for hours worked on a weekend beginning April 1, 2012). 
  • These shift premiums for work scheduled outside regular working hours are significantly more than those offered by NOSM’s host universities, Lakehead University and Laurentian University. 
 

Overtime 

   

   

  • NOSM’s employees would continue to accrue overtime for authorized work performed in excess of 35 hours per week at the rate of one and one-half hours (1.5x) for each hour of overtime worked.   
  • The offer provides for banking of overtime earned under express terms. 
 

The Northern Ontario School of Medicine is committed to reaching a first collective agreement with the OPSEU Staff Unit which fairly reflects the unique nature of NOSM and its workforce.    

 

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The Northern Ontario School of Medicine is committed to the education of high quality physicians and health professionals, and to international recognition as a leader in distributed, learning-centered, community-engaged education and research. 

Kimberley Larkin
Communications Officer
Phone: 705-662-7243
Email: klarkin@nosm.ca 

 

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