Paynter et al. and Treasury Board (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada)

66-2-27186, 27378 and 27379

  • Before: J.C. Cloutier
  • Appearances:  M. Tynes, for the Grievors; J. Begley, for the Employer
  • Decision Rendered: 1997-09-12

Subject terms:

Management rights – Hours of work – Consultation with the bargaining agent – Overtime assignment – Notice of overtime assignment – Operational requirements – the employer changed the hours of work so that: half of the employees would work from Monday to Friday, and the other half, from Tuesday to Saturday, with rotation every two or four weeks; and all contiguous overtime requests from the industry had to be filed before 4:00 P.M. on that day – 80% of all overtime is contiguous to a normal day's work – the employer had consulted with the grievors before implementing the changes, but did not consult with the bargaining agent, although the latter attempted to initiate discussions – the grievors argued that the employer breached the collective agreement regarding: the hours of work; the obligation to consult with the bargaining agent before implementing the changes; the equitable allocation of overtime; and the obligation to give adequate advance notice to employees required to work overtime – the grievors alleged that the employer should compensate, in cash or with compensatory leave, those of them who did not have their fair share of overtime since the changes came into effect – the grievors also submitted that advance notice of overtime before 4:00 P.M. in the day the overtime is required is not adequate – the employer responded that it has a right to change the hours of work and that it discussed these changes with the bargaining agent representatives – the employer submitted that the grievors do not have a right to overtime – the employer argued that the need for contiguous overtime is driven by operational requirements – the employer argued that the 4:00 P.M. cut-off for the industry to advise of any need for overtime also results from operational requirements – the adjudicator decided that the employer had a right to change the hours of works – the adjudicator found that there was no evidence suggesting that the position of the grievors had been prejudiced by the lack of discussions between the employer and the bargaining agent, but declared that the employer had breached the collective agreement in this regard – the adjudicator was satisfied that the allocation of overtime results from operational requirement and was not persuaded that it could be achieved in a better fashion – the adjudicator concluded that the 4:00 P.M. cut-off was implemented because of operational requirements and was a reasonable attempt to accommodate the needs of the industry and the concerns of the grievors.

Grievances denied.