Dear Sisters and Brothers;
On Sunday, October 5th I attended an “All CUPE Presidents” meeting in Toronto. A lot of issues arose among Presidents from School Boards, Municipalities, Hospitals, etc. One of the most common issues discussed was that there are unprecedented attacks on “defined benefit” pension plans. Under the guise of “austerity”, public sector employers are attacking pensions in a shift to “defined contribution” plans for new hires. These plans shift the bulk of risk to members and away from employers.
Our current Pension Plan was established and built up through hard bargaining, and it has a track record of the best way to provide a predictable and secure retirement income. Together, we pledge to resist all efforts by employers and government towards a “two-tier” system which would only serve to threaten Union Solidarity and strength!
Another “two-tier” offer at bargaining tables is around job security. Employers argue that it will not affect anyone who is already part of the Union. But we know that such proposals are designed to chip away at the size of the Bargaining Unit. Once the Union is smaller…EVERYONE’S job security is weakened. We have all pledged to fight back vigorously at any attempt to bring in two-tier job security provisions into our Collective Agreements!