The first modification is found under Clause 8.03, “Period Prior to 2004”.
It states that, for route holders and permanent relief employees, the period prior to January 1, 2004 during which a person worked as a Rural Route and Suburban Service Contractor will now be recognized for the purpose of seniority under Clause 8.02.
In scope the RSMC bargaining unit consists of over 9,000 positions including RSMC, On Call Relief Employees (OCRE) and Permanent Relief Employees (PRE). There are currently 2,800 RSMC that started prior to January 1, 2004.
Clause 8.03 (a) clarifies that the new seniority date will be the date previously used to establish the ranking of the employee, unless that date is revised under the provisions of Appendix L.
Another change found under clause 8.04 is that an On Call Relief Employee (OCRE) who becomes a route holder or a permanent relief employee will have her or his seniority date deemed retroactive to their first date of hire as an OCRE.
This is subject to the condition that there will be a break in seniority if the OCRE was not in the employ of the Canada Post Corporation for any period greater than 9.5 months.
The date that is deemed by the employer as the OCRE’s first date of hire can also be revised under the provisions of Appendix L.
Appendix L permits an employee who believes that their seniority date is not in compliance with Article 8.03 or 8.04 to submit documentation (this could include pay statements or record of employment) with an explanation in writing on why the date should be reviewed. The request for review must be submitted to an authorized representative of the Union designated by the National Director in each region.
The authorized representative of the Union will review the request and decide the new seniority date. This decision is final and binding and cannot be grieved by the Union, the employer or by employees.
The burden of proof, and the requirement to provide supportive documentation and an explanation, rests with the employee making the request.
If a new seniority date is established, the Union will provide the designated representative of the Corporation with the new seniority date, along with an explanation and sufficient documentation to support the change. The seniority date will then be revised within 14 calendar days and take effect. The new seniority date will not apply retroactively.
The relationship between clause 8.01 “Continuous Employment” and 8.02 “Seniority” needs to be carefully considered when determining the new seniority dates for route holders and permanent employees. That is because while continuous employment is the length of continuous service of an employee since the date of his or her last hiring of an employee of the Corporation, seniority is the length of continuous employment of the employee within the bargaining unit since his or her last date of entry in the unit.
It is also important to understand that, for the sole purpose of determining the seniority of employees, the Union and the Corporation have agreed in clause 8.03 (b) that the bargaining unit is deemed to have always been in place.
This means that if, before January 1, 2004, a contractor accepted work outside of the bargaining unit (now deemed through 8.03 (b) to exist), such as an acting supervisor or a pay clerk, their seniority date will become the first date of their return to the bargaining unit. Their continuous service date would still be the last date of hire with the post office department or Canada Post.
Union locals will be advised of the process to assist you with submitting a request to revise your seniority date to the regional office.