Local 73 – Annapolis Valley Region Centre for Education Bargaining Update: Tentative Agreement Reached. Telephone Town Hall Scheduled

Your Bargaining Committee reached a tentative agreement with the employer late Tuesday night. Your committee believes this is the best possible deal they can achieve at the table and so it is unanimously recommending you vote to accept this deal.

The tentative agreement includes economic increases and special wage adjustments that exceed what was achieved in most other public sector settlements. Most importantly, following the memberships’ strong rejection vote of the previous offer, the committee was able to finally achieve agreement on a compensation parity job evaluation system. That means that all Education Centre based jobs will now be evaluated by the province with the goal of determining a standard and fair rate of pay for each job at AVRCE.

That evaluation system will also allow the Union to participate in various stages of the review including an opportunity to challenge any rates that are initially established by the review.

In the highlights below you will note that the committee was able to achieve special wage increases for Educational Assistant 1s (fully qualified) and Early Childhood Educators Support (fully qualified). The AVRCE agreed to these increases in order to match them to increases recently achieved in similar classifications working in other sectors such as in the private pre primary sector and health care. These special increases ensure parity across sectors for these classifications. It is important to note that the compensation parity system will do similar work when it reviews all jobs. Any increases arising from this process will be paid retroactive to November 1, 2022.

This does not necessarily mean all jobs will receive higher rates of pay through the compensation parity process. It is possible that the evaluation will determine some AVRCE positions would be paid at a lower rate. If that happens, people currently employed will have their rates of pay protected and will continue to receive any economic increases.

Your committee was also able to achieve a significant $1 per hour increase for any classifications paid below $20 per hour after the first two 1.5% economic adjustment. This amounts to a further increase of at least 5 per cent for those groups.

Another significant improvement includes an agreement to immediately review the rates of pay for those members currently making minimum wage to determine whether those classifications should see a further increase above the economic adjustments and $1 per hour increases already agreed to.

Your Committee could not have achieved these results without the support of the members of the bargaining committee. Your strike vote and rejection vote provided the support the committee needed to achieve this deal.

Click here to view and download a copy of the tentative agreement.

Some of the highlights of your tentative agreement include:

  • 3-Year Term, effective April 1, 2021 and expires March 31, 2024 with Economic Adjustments April 1, 2021 – 1.5%, April 1, 2022 – 1.5%, April 1, 2023 – 3.0% (first Day of Year 3), March 31, 2024 – 0.5% (last day of Year 3). 
  • Educational Assistants 1 (fully qualified) will receive a 1% Special Adjustment on the same day but immediately before the Year three (3) economic adjustment of 3.0% (April 1, 2023).
  • Early Childhood Educators Support (fully qualified) will receive a 1.5% Special Adjustment on the same day but immediately before the Year three (3) economic adjustment of 3.0% (April 1, 2023).
  • Vacation Pay increase for members with 25+ years of service to 10% or 25 days.
  • For classifications included in Table 6, 7 and 8 that remain under $20.00 per hour after the first two (2) years of economic adjustments (1.5%, 1.5%) will receive an additional $1.00 per hour immediately before but on the same day as the Year three (3) economic adjustment of 3.0%. 
  • MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT (MOA) on creating a COMPENSATION ALIGNMENT system/process. (see attached)

The Compensation Alignment system/process will review “ALL” jobs within the non-teaching educational, operational, and administrative support functions of Nova Scotia provincial Education System. We achieved this with a requirement to have a Joint-Employer and Union Committee formed no later than January 1, 2023 and to have a report to review by January 31, 2024. We achieve Present Incumbent Only (PIO) protection for our members and a retroactive date of any increases to November 1, 2022. We believe this new system of evaluation is long overdue in the Educational Support Sector and will benefits employees across all Regional Centers of Education in Nova Scotia.

  • Side Letter – Agreement to evaluation the Educations Assistants 1 (fully qualified) first in the newly defined Compensation Alignment system/process.
  • MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT (MOA) for the employer to undertake an immediate review of the hourly wages of classifications that are currently paid at minimum wage.

All MOA’s and side letters can be found at the end of the ratification information document found here.

Information Session – Telephone Town Hall Meeting

A telephone town hall session will take place tonight, October 13th at 7:30 p.m. for all AVRCE Local 73 members. This is to allow you to review your tentative agreement and answer all of your questions or concerns prior to the E-vote.

Electronic Ratification Vote (E-vote)

We will be holding the ratification vote electronically using Intelivote. The vote will open on Friday, October 14th at 9:00 a.m. and close Tuesday, October 18th at 5:00 p.m. The evote email that you will receive in an email will have a PIN which will allow you to vote on-line or by phone.

Your strong support and solidarity was greatly appreciated throughout the bargaining process. We thank you for your engagement and look forward to reviewing the tentative agreement with you.

If you have any other questions, please contact a member of your bargaining committee or the NSGEU by calling 902-424-4063 (toll-free 1-877-556-7438) or emailing inquiry@nsgeu.ca.

Bargaining Committee:

Christine Davis, davislib123@gmail.com

Veronica Carr, carrveronical@gmail.com

Annette Leyenaar, annetteleyenaar@gmail.com

Nannette Doherty, fdoherty@eastlink.ca

Chief Negotiator Lloyd Samson, LSamson@nsgeu.ca

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