699 leave: Treasury Board fails to implement arbitration ruling
Since the Federal Public Sector Labour Relations and Employment Board ruled in favour of public service workers regarding the use of the 699 leave last March, Treasury Board has failed to implement the decision.
The decision stipulates that the employer can’t force workers to exhaust all other leave options before considering requests for 699 leave for COVID-19 related reasons. This decision meant that PSAC members who filed individual grievances related to 699 leave would be able request the leave be reimbursed to their leave banks.
This was a relief for many workers who were forced to use sick leave, family-related leave, or vacation leave. Yet it still appears that some departments continue to direct members to use other leave options before approving 699 leave, which is completely unacceptable.
The failure to implement the decision is causing significant confusion for members. More importantly, it is in direct violation of the collective agreement’s leave clauses.
Since the decision was issued in March, Treasury Board has never consulted PSAC to draft directives or guidelines to implement the decision — despite our many requests to initiate the process.
PSAC has once again reached out to the employer asking them to take immediate, meaningful action to change its practice, reimburse affected members, and engage with the union. If Treasury Board refuses to comply in a timely manner, PSAC will return the issue to the arbitration board and demand that Treasury Board comply with the decision.