CUPE Local 1356 Blog

Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 1356. We have three Collective Agreements as Local 1356, 1356-01, and 1356-02. The membership is comprised of the full-time and part-time workers of York University the Local website is at This Blog will include Local information and information garnered from sources other Universities, Colleges, Post Secondary/Tertiary Education and news sources supplying information.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Ontario archives will move to York University

The location is to be at the intersection of Ian MacDonald and York Boulevard. This building is slated to be located at the undeveloped area beside the Bookstore. The soil core samples have been taken to allow for the engineering to be conducted on the foundation.

from the CBC item
Ontario's official archives will move to a new building at York University after being housed in Toronto's downtown for nearly a century.

The province announced Monday that the Ontario archives collection, which includes thousands of documents valued at more than $400 million, will be moved to a new building on Keele Street at York University's main campus.

York will build and operate a new $100-million, three-storey facility, which the province will lease for $6 million a year. The building is scheduled for completion in 2009.

The move comes after a consultant's report said that the present building was devaluing the archives because of mould, sagging floors and the lack of a sprinkler system.

Ontario's Government Services Minister Gerry Phillips says the new location will also make it easier for residents to access the collection.

"York University is very accessible, and I think in some respects it is easier to get to the York location than right downtown, so there are certain advantages to the new location as well," said Phillips.

The minister added that the new building will connect with the university's subway station if the Spadina line extension goes ahead as planned.

The York University announcement
The CBC news item
The paper edition of The Star included an artist's rendition of the building.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Canadians need a Break from their Christmas Break

In this item there is recognition of the stress created and caused by the current season.

Injury should not mean Poverty

Injury should not mean Poverty From the Ontario Federation of Labour Focus magazine November 2006.

Nominations for Bora Laskin Award 2007

The University of Toronto, Centre for Industrial Relations and Human Resources, is inviting nominations for its annual Bora Laskin Award for Outstanding Contribution to Labour Law. The Award has been established by the University of Toronto to honour those who have made an outstanding contribution to Canadian labour law.

The award is named after the late Chief Justice Bora Laskin (1912-1984), who before joining the Supreme Court of Canada, was pre-eminent as a labour law scholar and labour arbitrator.
The recipients of the Bora Laskin Award include
Professor Harry Arthurs of Osgoode Hall Law School (2003),
Professor Pierre Verge of Laval University, Quebec (2004),
Professor Paul C. Weiler,
Henry J. Friendly Professor of Law at Harvard University (2005),
Roy Heenan, founding partner of Heenan Blaike LLP (2006) and
Mel Myers, founding partner of Myers Weinberg LLP (2006).

Nominees will be considered from all fields relating to labour law, including, for example, academia, private practice, courts, tribunals and arbitration. The Awards Committee will consider nominations received on or before January 19th.

This year's award recipient will be announced at a dinner, on the evening of Thursday, May 10, to be held in conjunction with the Lancaster House Conference on Canadian Labour Board Law, at the Sutton Place Hotel in Toronto on May 10-11, 2007.
To submit a nomination, please fill out the following online form:

The 2007 Awards Committee is comprised of:

  • Frank Reid, Director, Centre for Industrial Relations and Human Resources, University of Toronto
  • Madam Justice Louise Otis, Quebec Court of Appeal
  • Kenneth Swan, President, Ontario Labour-Management Arbitrators'
  • Madam Justice Sheila Greckol, Alberta Court of Queen's Bench
  • Professor Brian Langille, University of Toronto Faculty of Law
  • Mr. Justice Warren Winkler, Ontario Superior Court of Justice
  • Thomas Kuttner, Vice-Chair, New Brunswick Labour and Employment Board
  • Stan Lanyon, Arbitrator/Mediator, B.C.

Lancaster House Publishing

Human Rights Tribunal and Commission changes - Law

Ontario government passes controversial human rights bill


On December 5, 2006, the Ontario legislature enacted amendments to the
Ontario Human Rights Code. In an effort to speed up the enforcement
process, Bill 107 removes from the Human Rights Commission its screening
function, and allows complainants to apply directly to the Human Rights

The rest of this report is available at:

Lancaster House

CUPE Human Rights Conference, Nov. 23- 26 2006, Vancouver

OUWCC Bargaining Bulletin

resolution passed at NEB meeting

National Executive Board Meeting
December 13-14, 2006


  1. Endorse the Canadian Federation of Students campaign for
    affordable post-secondary education;
  2. Encourage all divisions, locals and councils to work with campus and
    city-wide coalitions;
  3. Make a donation of $5,000 to the Canadian Federation of Students to
    assist in this campaign;
  4. Communicate this support to all members of the Canadian Union of
    Public Employees, to the Canadian Federation of Students, and to the
    Canadian Federation Students of Colour listserv.


  • affordable post-secondary education benefits all Canadians;
  • tuition fees are an unnecessary financial barrier to post-secondary
    education and student debt has skyrocketed over the last 15 years;
  • the federal government has failed to restore the post-secondary
    education funding cuts of the 1990s;
  • the federal government continues to squander public resources on tax
    cuts rather than investing in public social programs;
  • CUPE delegates attending the CUPE universities meeting in Montreal
    pledged their support for the CFS campaign as a show of solidarity with

Happy Holidays!

Greetings from Canadian Association of Labour Media

CIHI: MRI and CT scanners up 20% in three years

Patients surveyed report modest reduction in access difficulties
December 14, 2006-The numbers of MRI and CT scanners in Canada have increased significantly in the past three years, along with an increase in the overall number of exams and a decline in reported access problems from patients. These are some of the findings of new analysis released today by the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI). Medical Imaging Technologies in Canada, 2006 reveals that, as of January 1, 2006, Canada had 196 magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners, an increase of 50 scanners in three years, and 378 computed tomography (CT) scanners, 47 more than in 2003. In a national survey, the proportion of patients reporting difficulties in accessing a non-emergency CT scan decreased from 14% in 2003 to 10% in 2005, while those reporting difficulties in accessing an MRI test dropped from 21% in 2003 to 16% in 2005.
Growth in the number of MRI scanners in both hospitals and free-standing facilities
The number of MRI scanners in hospitals, which are mainly publicly funded, increased from 121 in 2003 to 164 in 2006, while the number of CT scanners in hospitals increased from 321 to 360 over the same three-year period. The number of MRI scanners in free-standing facilities, mainly privately funded, grew from 25 to 32 in three years and, as of January 1, 2006, these scanners were located in five provinces. The number of CT scanners in free-standing facilities increased from 10 to 18 between 2003 and 2006, and were located in four provinces as of January 1.

Free-standing facilities that responded to CIHI's national survey of medical imaging equipment reported that between 78% and 79% of their revenues from CT and MRI scanners came from private insurance or out-of-pocket payments this year, while 5 to 6% of their revenues came from workers' compensation boards, and 15 to 17% came from other sources, such as research grants.
Medical Imaging Technologies in Canada, 2006
This document incorporates the results of CIHI's 2006 National Survey of Selected Imaging Equipment, as well as data from Statistics Canada. As part of the survey, equipment counts were requested from all imaging facilities and checked against manufacturers' data and CIHI's own data.
About CIHI
The Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) collects and analyzes information on health and health care in Canada and makes it publicly available. Canada's federal, provincial and territorial governments created CIHI as a not-for-profit, independent organization dedicated to forging a common approach to Canadian health information. CIHI's goal: to provide timely, accurate and comparable information. CIHI's data and reports inform health policies, support the effective delivery of health services and raise awareness among Canadians of the factors that contribute to good health.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Michael Markicevic appointed acting AVP Facilities Services

Michael Markicevic, assistant vice-president, Campus Services & Business Operations (CSBO), will assume the role of acting assistant vice-president, Facilities Services, effective immediately. This appointment will include the full scope of responsibilities associated with the assistant vice-president, Facilities Services position. Markicevic will maintain his current responsibilities as assistant vice-president, CSBO.

In making the announcement, Gary Brewer, York vice-president finance & administration, said: "In the two years since arriving at York, Mike has been highly effective in providing strong leadership for all the business and service units within CSBO, focusing on process development and improvement, service delivery, budget planning and management, and staff development. I would like to thank Mike for taking on this considerably expanded scope of responsibilities."

This is yet a further progression from the first notation in the YFile

YUSA Personal Appeal

The Executive of CUPE Local 1356 has decided to contribute $100 towards the appeal below on behalf of the members of CUPE Local 1356 and would ask others to follow our lead on contributing.

CUPE Local 1356 is re-publishing this correspondence in support of the cause contained within it.


It is at this time of year that many of us reach out to those around us friends, family, colleagues and even to strangers for whom the stresses of life are multiplied over the holiday season. One of the mandates of YusApuY is to work with our members and to support them through difficult times, whether these relate to workplace issues, health or personal hardships. It is about a personal issue that I write to you today. One of our members, Sharon Carey-Cicciarella and her husband Rob are dealing with one of the most terrifying experiences of parenthood the grave illness of a child. Their young son, Alessandro, who will turn five years old on December 16, has already spend half of his short life fighting a continuing battle with ALL Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia which is a blood cancer that originates in the bone marrow. Although Alessandro has had moments of promise from long months of invasive treatment, he has recently relapsed and will be admitted once again to the Hospital for Sick Children. He is scheduled to return to Sick Kid's on Monday, December 11 and will spend his 5th Birthday and the upcoming Christmas holiday in hospital. And even with the best of treatment, due to his relapse being so close to his completion of treatment, the doctors have advised Sharon and Rob that it will be extremely difficult to manage and the side affects of the chemotherapy this time around could be very severe and some are life threatening. His chances of a greater recovery depend on a successful bone marrow transplant. His changes are a little more than 30 percent. As you can imagine, Alessandro's parents, Sharon and Rob and his nine year old sister, Cassandra, are facing the most difficult time of their lives. The financial burden is extraordinary and expenses incurred for homeopathic and naturopathic medications to ease their son's discomfort can be overwhelming. Also their time away from work, travel to and from the hospital from their home in Newmarket is taking its toll. Other aids like a hepafilter have to be installed in the house and in his bedroom because the introduction of any cold or virus could prove fatal. They of course want to acquire any equipment that will help their son like many treatments and health aids - these are not covered by any plan.

Although we cannot ease the emotional load our fellow member is carrying, we CAN ease the financial burden. To this end, YusApuY has set up a Fund for Alessandro and his family at the York University branch - ALTERNA CREDIT UNION, Account #8254237 in York Lanes. We encourage our members to donate no donation is too small each contribution will build on the one before and together we can make a difference to the Cicciarella family, who are looking for hope in any form that it comes. The journey into the future is uncertain we can never know with certainty what may lie on the path ahead. Sharon, Rob, Cassandra and little Alessandro need support right now. Remember that by reaching out a hand to another, we also get someone holding on to us.

In solidarity
Joanie Cameron Pritchett

Report on Workplace Deaths 1993 to 2005

The Centre for the Study of Living Standards has released a report titled "Five Deaths a Day: Workplace Fatalities in Canada, 1993 - 2005" - the website is - it appears to demonstrate that the so called health and safety focus of recent years is an illusion.

WSIB Forms Simpification Project

The WSIB continues to review business products and processes to improve efficiency and customer service. We are moving towards enhancing the consistency of information gathering, which will serve to improve decision-making, early and safe return to work efforts and assist in prevention activities.

The Forms Simplification Project is reviewing and updating a number of key information-gathering forms (progress reports and REO forms). Work is well underway in this project and at this time we are beginning to pilot test recently revised forms.

The pilot testing will occur by randomly issuing the revised form in a number of claims. In no way will use of the new forms affect or delay benefit decisions. In instances where the revised form is issued, we will ask the user to complete and return a brief survey. Incoming information will be analyzed and findings applied to the revised forms.

Prior to implementation we will provide the revised forms to our external working group for their final feedback. We anticipate this happening near the end of the first quarter of 2007.

media coverage of fatalities study

Average of five people die each work day
Date: December 12, 2006
Source: Globe and Mail
Page: A10

The number of work-related fatalities is Canada is rising sharply,
revealing a dark side to the boom in the oil fields, mining and the
construction sector.

It also reflects a steady increase in the number of workers dying from
long-ago exposure to dangerous products such as asbestos, according to a
report being released today by the Centre for the Study of Living Standards.

In 2005, the number of workplace fatalities totalled 1,097, an average
of five every working day, said Andrew Sharpe, executive director of the

"The numbers and rates of workplace fatalities are troubling," he said.
"Other countries are making progress in this area but we're not."

In fact, only four other countries have higher rates of workplace
fatalities than Canada -- South Korea, Mexico, Portugal and Turkey.

Dr. Sharpe cautioned, however, that the lack of standardized
measurements makes direct comparison between countries difficult. What
is more important, he said, is the trend.

"In almost all other industrial countries, workplace fatalities are
going down, but not in Canada."

He said one explanation is that Canada's "goods-producing sector" is
booming, and it represents a much larger percentage of the economy than
in most countries.

In fact, the industries where workers have the greatest risk of dying on
the job are those that typify Canada's image: fishing, mining, forestry
and construction.

Canadian workers are also paying the price for the widespread use of
asbestos and its continued mining and export. Almost two-thirds of
occupational exposure deaths were related to asbestos.

The 119-page report, titled Five Deaths a Day, shows the number of
work-related deaths has risen 45 per cent, to 1,097 last year from 758
in 2003.

Of the 1,097 deaths, 491 were due to on-the-job accidents, 557 related
to diseases related to occupational hazards and 49 weren't classified.
The statistics are drawn from provincial workers' compensation boards
and include only deaths for which there was a claim.

The report includes an extensive list of examples of workplace deaths,
such as: a ski guide caught in an avalanche; a worker who died of
bladder cancer as a result of exposure to chemicals in a smelter; a
construction worker electrocuted when aluminum gutters he was installing
on a home touched electrical wires; an auto mechanic who died of
mesothelioma (a rare form of lung or abdominal cancer) after years of
exposure to asbestos in brake pads; and a driver whose truck overturned,
crushing him under the load.

The report shows that for every death, there are 390 serious injuries.
While the number of injuries has fallen sharply, the number of deaths
continues to rise. "I don't really have an explanation for that," Mr.
Sharpe said.

Over all, the work-related fatality rate is 6.8 deaths per 100,000
workers in Canada, but there are significant provincial variations,
ranging from a high of 11.7 per 100,000 in Newfoundland and Labrador to
a low of 1.5 per 100,000 in Prince Edward Island.

Men are 30 times more likely to die of work-related causes than women,
according to the report. Older workers are also far more likely than
young ones to die from work-related causes.

Study points to asbestos risks: Canada resists efforts for international ban
The Windsor Star
Tue 12 Dec 2006
Page: A8
Section: News
Byline: Eric Beauchesne
Dateline: OTTAWA
Source: CanWest News Service

OTTAWA - Nearly five Canadians on average died every single working day
last year because of a work-related accident or illness, according to a
report today that expresses "grave concern" that such deaths are rising
-- not falling as they are in most other industrial countries.

"We have also linked the increase in workplace deaths in Canada to
asbestos exposure," says the Centre for the Study of Living Standards
report, which is critical of Canada's continued mining, use and
exportation of a substance that many other industrial countries have

"Indeed, Canada refuses to sign an international agreement to ban the
export of asbestos," it adds.

Canada earlier this year reportedly blocked efforts by other nations to
have asbestos -- which is now produced only in Quebec and exported
mostly to underdeveloped countries -- placed on an international list of
banned substances.

A call to the office of Natural Resources Minister Gary Lunn was not
returned Monday

Asbestos-related illnesses alone accounted for 62 per cent of deaths
from occupational diseases and 30 per cent of total workplace fatalities
in 2004, the most recent year for which there are full figures, the
report says. "The increased fatality rate from asbestos, up from 0.4 per
100,000 workers in 1996 to 1.8 in 2004, accounted for the lion's share
of the increased incidence from occupational disease," it says.

Further, it warns that while most of the deaths due to asbestos date
back to exposure before the implementation of stricter controls, the
number of work-related deaths due to the substance has still not likely

NDP MP Pat Martin, a former asbestos miner, expressed shock at the
increase in workplace deaths and the role of asbestos in that increase,
and anger at the Canadian government's support for the asbestos industry.

"Asbestos is the greatest industrial killer the world has ever known,"
said the Manitoba MP, who still undergoes yearly tests on his
asbestos-scarred lungs. "And Canada is in complete denial of the health

The asbestos mines in Quebec are mostly located in economically
depressed areas, and critics suggest the government has taken a stand
against closures for that reason.