Robyn Benson, PSAC


Robyn in Winnipeg.jpg

March 19 was a Day of Action to push our bargaining demands for safe and healthy workplaces. Members across the country responded to the call with enthusiastic demonstrations of support. I joined one of the demos in my home town of Winnipeg.

One week later, PSAC signed a memorandum of understanding at the bargaining table with Treasury Board negotiators that marks an excellent beginning. To reverse the escalating incidence of mental health issues in federal workplaces, a joint task force will be struck to find ways to address the problem. Among other things, the task force will address how the national standard for psychological health and safety in the workplace can best be achieved within the public service. This is the standard we’ve been pressing the government to adopt for some time.

I’m proud of our members and proud of our hard-working bargaining teams. Our bargaining teams are still labouring to achieve the contracts our members deserve.

We should celebrate our success in getting the Employer to recognize that the workplace is literally making our members sick and in negotiating a collective agreement provision to address the problem.

Our win was a collective one. Our members came out on March 19, along with members from other federal public service unions. This helped our bargaining teams forge ahead at the bargaining table.

But let’s not be tempted to rest on our laurels. This was a great step forward for us. However we all know what lies ahead. The path to a new contract is full of bumps and boulders. So what is needed? The same determination that we (all of us) used to win the agreement on addressing mental health. The same commitment by members, leaders and bargaining teams to see the bargaining process through to a successful conclusion.

We’re newly energized. And if this recent victory is any indication—you ain’t seen nothing yet.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Robyn Benson, PSAC published on April 9, 2015 2:33 PM.

Healthy workplaces: crunch time was the previous entry in this blog.

Time to stand up! is the next entry in this blog.

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