Policy grievance victory in community social services subsector

Employers ordered to pay outstanding retroactive wage increases to members by December 31, 2023.
CSS Barg Bulletin

On October 24, arbitrator Christopher Sullivan ruled in favour of the Community Social Services Bargaining Association (CSSBA) over a policy grievance on outstanding retroactive wage increases.

In June, the CSSBA filed a grievance against the Community Social Services Employers’ Association (CSSEA) after members complained they hadn’t received the retroactive wage increases as negotiated in the 2022-2025 collective agreement.

Although the policy grievance put pressure on most employers to pay up, several were still dragging their heels. So, the CSSBA advanced the grievance to an expedited arbitration.

In his decision, Arbitrator Sullivan ordered employers, who have not complied, to pay wage increases and retroactive payments by October 31.

If they don’t pay by October 31, they must pay by December 31 with interest calculated in accordance with the Court Order Interest Act, applicable from September 11, 2023 to the date the monies are paid.
Also, employers who do not make the October 31 deadline, must disclose this information to the CSSEA and provide an update once they do pay workers, including calculations and confirmation of interest paid. 

This decision not only enforces a deadline, but it also financially incentivizes those employers who still owe members money to pay sooner. 

Working for more than 200 employers, represented by the CSSEA, the CSSBA covers 19,000 health care workers in nine unions – including about 1,500 HEU members.