OLRB Hearing – CULE vs CEP – update

CEP vs PSAC vs CULE – Ontario Labour Relations Board Hearing August 23-24, 2010 – Toronto, Ontario

This hearing was set to determine the outcome of the CEP Raid of Ontario CULE members. The parties met at the appointed time of 9:30 am at the Board offices in Toronto. The Board appeared at 10am and upon seeing Counsel for the PSAC, one of the Board members asked for a recess. Upon returning it was revealed a Board member had a conflict of interest with the law firm of Counsel for the PSAC (Hicks, Morley). The Board then recessed to find a new member to the 3 member panel and advised they would reconvene at 2pm. When the parties met at 2 pm some procedural wrangling ensued as CEP had not produced certain documents. After some discussion, CULE withdrew the argument of the national bargaining unit as the case law was not supportive in light of the current wording of the collective agreement. It was apparent the Board would only concern itself with workers in Ontario and was without jurisdiction to rule on workers outside of the province. As was noted by CEP Counsel the application is basically “a carve out” of the Ontario workers in a larger bargaining unit.

The parties then addressed the issue of a mail in ballot for Tom Hamilton and provided argument to the Board. In essence the case law tends to direct the Board to consider only those circumstances where a significant number of workers would be disenfranchised if they were not able to vote especially by a mail in ballot. So Tom not being a significant number was dealt with by the Board who ruled he would not be given a mail in ballot.

On the second day the parties reconvened. After some further discussion, the documents of PSAC and CEP and CULE were entered with mutual consent. CEP then had Adrian Dimutru take the stand and we heard evidence given by Adrian Dimitru. The cross examination by the CULE Counsel was lengthy and brought the second day to a close.

The parties agreed that 2 more days of hearing are required to hear evidence from Don Dudar and others and then for the parties to present their arguments to the Board. The parties will discuss hearing dates in the near future. We will advise what the hearing dates are in due course. The CULE team is satisfied with the way the hearing is proceeding.

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The results of the vote to have a vote are in: 94 eligible to vote (CULE I – 57/CULE II – 37) 59 Ballots cast 23 – No 36 – Yes Watch for more information to come.