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Corporation re-tables rejected contract language

CBC management tabled a so-called comprehensive proposal late yesterday that is neither comprehensive nor a proposal. It is little more than a compilation of language rejected by the Guild bargaining committee and by our membership during the strike vote.

For example, it includes the offensive language on employment status that, despite claims to the contrary, makes no commitment to maintain permanent staff but actually provides the ability to make virtually every future hire a contract employee.

The Corporation seeks to take away overtime, substantially reduce turnaround provisions, contract out our work simply because someone will do it more cheaply, eliminate severance pay, and abuse temporary employees.

Throughout this process, the Guild is the only one of the two sides to have offered imaginative solutions. We introduced language on work-life balance, alternate work arrangements, deferred salary leave, a partnership in training and a national diversity initiative, just to mention a few examples.

Management’s strategy has become clear. It is not prepared to bargain. It has chosen instead to bully. Unfortunately, this has become a method of operation for the current leadership of the Corporation. It has already caused four major work stoppages at the CBC and Radio-Canada over the past six years.

The Corporation now tries to blame the slow pace of talks on the Guild. Don’t believe a word of it. Management’s bargaining committee has steadfastly refused to move on a single major issue.

The Corporation continues its efforts, in violation of the Labour Code, to bargain directly with employees by emailing to every Guild member a package containing proposals never presented at the table and language already rejected.

We have informed management we are always prepared to bargain a fair agreement but will not have a bad deal foisted upon us. The irresponsible behaviour of the management bargaining committee puts the future of public broadcasting in Canada at risk.

Your bargaining committee:
Arnold Amber, Toronto
Pierre Claveau, Vancouver
Brendan Elliott, Charlottetown
Percy Hatfield, Windsor
Joe Hill, Toronto
Wendy Hunt, Toronto
Gerry Jones, Regina
Barbara Saxberg, Toronto
Lee Siemon, Toronto
Chris Turner, Fredericton
Rick Warren, Vancouver
Dan Oldfield, Senior CMG staff representative

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