MAYOR BOWMAN SEEKS COUNCIL DIRECTION ON UNITED FIREFIGHTERS OF WINNIPEG AGREEMENT
WINNIPEG – A motion giving Council the ability to provide direction to the Public Service on how to implement one part of the new Collective Agreement with the United Firefighters of Winnipeg, Local 867 (UFFW) will be introduced at today’s Executive Policy Committee Mayor Brian Bowman announced today.
“The City of Winnipeg negotiated a new Collective Agreement with the UFFW, which was ratified and unanimously supported by Council in April 2017,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. “That agreement has come forward for my signature but before I execute the agreement on behalf of Council I feel it’s important Council be given an opportunity to provide direction to the Public Service on how to proceed with implementing an updated provision relating to the UFFW union president’s leave and reimbursement of costs associated with that leave.”
The motion outlines how prior to 2014 the City of Winnipeg used to pay 100% of the UFFW’s union President’s salary and benefit costs with no reimbursement by UFFW.
Recognizing all other City of Winnipeg unions reimburse the City of Winnipeg in full for each of their President's salary and benefit costs, direction was provided by Council to the Public Service through a Letter of Understanding in January 2014 to have them come to an agreement regarding the union President’s leave and reimbursement of costs to taxpayers from the UFFW.
In March 2014, an agreement was reached between the City of Winnipeg and UFFW which provided reimbursement of 40% of the UFFW President’s salary and benefits costs from the UFFW.
The motion to be introduced by Mayor Bowman today identifies that the 2017 Collective Agreement includes an updated Letter of Understanding that has been fully executed by the current President of UFFW, and presents an opportunity for the Public Service and UFFW to arrive at an agreement representing a better deal for taxpayers by recommitting them to an agreement for reimbursement of costs.
Mayor Bowman stressed the motion will not seek to amend the Collective Agreement nor seek to revisit the Collective Agreement.
“I will sign the Collective Agreement as negotiated by the City of Winnipeg and the UFFW, which was voted on and ratified by Council, including myself, in April 2017,” said Mayor Bowman.
“However, I believe it’s in the best interest of both parties that direction be provided by Council to the Public Service on how to proceed with discussions pursuant to the updated Letter of Understanding prior to me executing the Collective Agreement on behalf of Council,” said Mayor Bowman. “After Council has been given the opportunity to provide direction, I am prepared to sign and formally execute the agreement as voted on by Council in April 2017.”
The motion recommends that direction be provided to the Public Service to seek reimbursement of 100% of the UFFW President’s salary and benefit cost, and emphasizes the importance of it not being construed as representing a lack of support and appreciation on the part of Council for the committed and valuable work of each member of Winnipeg’s fire paramedic service.
The complete Collective Agreement with the UFFW is available publicly on the City of Winnipeg’s website and can be accessed here: http://winnipeg.ca/corp/CollectAgree/pdfs/UFFW-CA-16-20.pdf