VOLUME 9 No. 19| DECEMBER 4, 2019

Standing together to end violence against women

The 12 days of action to raise awareness about violence against women continue until December 6, which in Québec is a day to commemorate the tragedy that occurred at the Polytechnique 30 years ago, when 13 students and one employee were murdered just because they were women. The APTS convention, with 800 members in attendance, was a good venue for demonstrating our commitment to fight violence against women.

Given that the APTS is part of the movement spearheaded by the Fédération des maisons d’hébergement pour femmes to raise awareness among men as allies, the APTS gave the male delegates at the convention an opportunity to speak out in support of women. We invite you to view and share the video on social media.

12 days of action to eliminate violence against women

Backed by close to 20 organizations, the committee behind this annual campaign chose the theme 30 ans plus tard, croyez-nous aussi! (30 years later, believe us too!) to point out that the experiences and demands of the most marginalized women are all too often trivialized and denied in the public arena.

For more information about the activities taking place in your locality and the various campaign materials available, visit https://12joursdaction.com/.



Equality without further delay

Along with many other unions and civil society groups, the APTS signed the petition tabled in the National Assembly on November 26 demanding, notably, that the Pay Equity Act be reviewed as soon as possible. We encourage our members to sign the petition.

A review of the Pay Equity Act would help address some shortcomings and make it comply with a Supreme Court decision, which ruled that wage gaps must be redressed as of the date that the changes engendering discrimination occur. This would apply to all pay equity audits, both past and future.

The Pay Equity Act must be reviewed every 10 years, with a report tabled in the National Assembly. The minister of labour, employment and social solidarity, Jean Boulet, tabled his report in June, but the government hasn’t acted on it, in contrast to its follow-up after the 2008–2009 review.


New insurance premium calculator

As was recently announced in a BlueAPTS article, your insurance premiums will be lowered as of January 1, 2020. In order to simulate the new rate applicable to your current plan, or for any changes you wish to make, use the premium calculator found at the end of the article.

To add dental coverage or raise your health insurance coverage to the intermediate or superior plan, you have to make a request to your employer as soon as possible so that SSQ Insurance receives it before December 31, in order for this change to take effect on January 1, 2020.

Retraite Québec's website

Retraite Québec provides a wealth of information regarding your retirement plan, the RREGOP, on its website. The Members section includes a retirement pension calculator based on the statement of participation you received in recent weeks. This tool helps make sense of the pension you are entitled to. The website is designed to be user-friendly, so don’t hesitate to browse through it and learn more about the RREGOP.


It's time we stop funding the climate crisis!

The APTS team from Abitibi-Témiscamingue is calling for a regional and provincial mobilization against GNL Québec, which is planning to build a 750-km gas pipeline, a gas liquefaction plant, and a marine terminal to export fossil fuels from Western Canada to international markets. The proposed pipeline would go through several regions of Québec. The project would aggravate the climate crisis by producing 7.8 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions, enough to wipe out the province’s efforts to reduce GHGs. An online petition has been created to oppose the project.


Dismissal reversed for lack of evidence

An arbitrator reprimanded an employer after the latter fired a worker following a botched investigation. The APTS defended the worker, who was accused of sexual touching by a service user whose version of the facts had been deemed credible by the attending psychiatrist. The arbitrator ruled that the employer had placed too much emphasis on the psychiatrist’s point of view and failed to meticulously review the service user’s account to check if the allegations were credible.

The arbitrator highlighted the contradictory testimonies received, as well as the worker’s credibility and his outstanding reputation. The worker gave a compelling testimony, without evasiveness or manipulation, and no reproach for inappropriate or unprofessional behaviour was levelled against him. The arbitrator ordered that he be reinstated because the employer failed to provide clear and convincing evidence of wrongdoing.


Do you provide homecare services to seniors? 

We are currently working with Maude Benoît, a professor at UQAM’s political science department, who is interested in how the managerial reforms are affecting homecare services provided to seniors across Québec. She would like to receive feedback from those working with seniors. If you work in this sector, you’re invited to fill out a survey, which should take about 30 to 40 minutes to complete. The survey is available in both French and English, and all answers will remain anonymous. You have until January 29, 2020 to participate. We highly encourage you to take part in the survey and share it among your contacts.


A justified catch-up salary increase

Last week, the Institut de la statistique du Québec released figures confirming wage discrepancies between the various sectors and Québec’s public service. These numbers justify our demand to the government for a catch-up increase. Salaries in the public sectors of health, education and social services are 13.2% lower than salaries paid to other workers across Québec, and 10.2% lower than salaries paid in the private sector. For more information, visit negoapts.com.

You want to know what happened at the APTS convention?

Check out our newsletter, L'APTS en congrès, for an overview of all the discussions and decisions of the 800 members gathered in Trois-Rivières the week of November 21. An English version will be available soon.