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Guild settles with CBC on Athens allowances

The Canadian Media Guild reached a settlement with CBC on expense allowances for the 2004 Summer Games in Athens. Each affected employee will receive $13.50 for each day they were in Athens. That means an employee who spent two weeks in Athens will receive $189 from the CBC. The total settlement is worth $90,000 to CMG members.

CBC employees who worked in Athens were paid $105 per day for expenses. In November 2005, arbitrator Pamela Chapman ruled that the Corporation must pay no less than the allowance rate established by the federal government’s Treasury Board, which was $147.69 per day.

The Guild made the settlement to avoid more lengthy hearings before Arbitrator Chapman. The Corporation had argued that its rate was appropriate since it supplied some meals to employees in Athens. For their part, employees told the Guild that meals were not uniformly supplied and, when they were, the meals were substandard and even inedible in some cases.

Beyond the cash settlement, the Guild has won an important ruling from a third party: the Corporation cannot arbitrarily decide to lower expense allowance rates and expect employees to subsidize its operations.

The settlement applies to all employees who were not assigned to work for the host broadcaster. The CBC is also applying the Guild settlement to employees in its other bargaining units.

For more information, contact Glenn Gray (glenn@cmg.ca) at 416-591-5333 or 1-800-465-4149.

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