Nov. 12, 2021
Re: Stronger Together. Stronger with OPSEU/SEFPO.
Over the past decade, almost every other person on staff at the OCC – including managers – have seen their wages go up.
But not front-line investigative coroners. The OCA has repeatedly asked the OCC to open talks about our wages and working conditions. We’ve been repeatedly told that not only is there no money in the budget to address our wages or our working conditions, but also that the quality of our work leaves something to be desired. In other words: to take it or leave it.
Now it’s about to get worse.
As we’re all aware, the OCC is planning to change the coroner delivery model, making us all contract workers with secret, individual contracts. Alone, none of us have any bargaining power. And we’d be competing against each other in a race to the bottom.
We believe it’s time for Ontario’s coroners to turn a corner with OCC by uniting our voices and demanding that we bargain collectively in the same way as crown attorneys, professional engineers, and law officers of the crown.
To help with this, the OCA executive has negotiated and enthusiastically endorses a tentative “cooperation agreement” with the union OPSEU/SEFPO.
With 180,000 members in the Ontario public sector, OPSEU/SEFPO is an experienced and powerful voice with government and employers. By partnering with OPSEU/SEFPO, the OCC and the Ministry of the Solicitor General will be forced to begin hearing and addressing our concerns.
All of Ontario’s coroners will have a chance to hear more about this cooperation agreement, and ask any questions they have, during virtual townhall meetings on Nov. 23, Nov. 30, Dec. 1, Dec. 7, and Dec. 11.
And as promised, all Ontario coroners will also have the chance to vote on the cooperation agreement between Dec. 10 and Dec. 13.
Please vote! The more of us who vote in favour of the agreement, the stronger will be our demands for fairer bargaining, and a better Coroner system for all.
Dr. Jeannie Walton – OCA President
Dr. Geoff Bond – OCA Treasurer & Past President
Dr. Nick Cuberovic – OCA Secretary
Dr. Mark Whittaker – OCA Communications, Web Master & IT
Dr. Robert Reddoch – OCA Regional Representative
Dr. Steve Bodley – OCA Regional Representative
Ontario Coroners Association
Ontario Public Service Employees Union
WHEREAS OCA is a professional association that represents the interests of over 300 Coroners employed by the Province of Ontario;
WHEREAS the Executive of the OCA has determined that the interests of their members would be best served if they had the legal right to bargain collectively and were represented by OPSEU, an established trade union within the meaning of the Labour Relations Act with a strong democratic structure, expert staff, and an excellent track record in the Ontario Public Service;
WHEREAS a recent online poll of Coroners found that 95.6% of respondents broadly supported representation by OPSEU, and directed the Executive to proceed;
NOW THEREFORE the Parties agree to work cooperatively as provided below in order to secure collective bargaining rights for all individuals employed as Coroners by the Province of Ontario (the “Coroners”) with OPSEU as their lawful bargaining agent.
To be signed by:
Warren (Smokey) Thomas
Dr. Jeannie Walton
Ontario Coroners – Time to turn the corner
The Ontario Coroners Association