VOLUME 11 No. 2 | JANUARY 25, 2021

Mediation begins in hopes of reaching a settlement

It has become clear that the negotiating team on the employer side has no leeway to discuss two priority issues: work overload and attraction/retention of personnel. As a consequence, the APTS asked labour minister Jean Boulet to appoint a mediator in order to reach a negotiated settlement, and the mediation process began immediately on January 21.

The APTS hopes that an impartial third party can get the government to see that we have made significant efforts to reach an agreement, and that the ball is now in its court. Follow developments on the negoapts.com website.

The APTS before a parliamentary commission

On January 19, the APTS was the first labour organization to address the parliamentary Committee on Labour and the Economy on the topic of Bill 59. We explained how we think the bill should be modified to genuinely modernize Québec’s occupational health and safety system in a forward-looking way. The APTS noted that although Minister Boulet’s reform extends prevention measures to all categories of workers, it also includes regulations that greatly limit their scope. Worse yet, Bill 59 restricts access to benefits given in cases of work-related injury or occupational disease by increasing the CNESST’s powers at the expense of the attending physician.

For more information, read the press release or the brief itself (in French).

Webinar on retirement benefits

Whether you’re at the beginning of your career or just about to retire, our webinar on RREGOP (the Government and Public Employees Retirement Plan) and other retirement benefits – Mieux comprendre le RREGOP et les autres prestations de retraite – will give you the information you need to optimize your participation in your pension plan.

Sessions will be held at various dates from February to May to make sure everyone who is interested can attend. February sessions will be held in French, with English sessions to be scheduled over the next few months. February dates and times are as follows:

February 9 – 6 to 8 pm
February 16 – 12 to 2 pm
February 24 – 7 to 9 pm

You must register for one of these dates if you want to participate. If you have any questions, please write to us at retraite.assurance@aptsq.com.

Two categories of psychotherapy?

Ministerial order 2020-107 acknowledges the validity of the permit to exercise psychotherapy within the institutions of the health and social services system. This means that permit holders will be allowed to increase their availability in order to provide psychotherapy. The order also establishes rules for the purchase of psychotherapy services from the private sector – and unfortunately, the conditions it establishes for psychologists outside the public sector bear no comparison with those granted to psychologists employed by public institutions. In addition to fees twice as high as the highest hourly rate for psychologists in the public system, psychologists from the private sector will even enjoy greater professional autonomy!

An APTS press release vigorously denounces this policy, which provides psychologists with an incentive to move to private practice. We continue to demand better recognition of our members in terms of compensation and professional autonomy.

Strengthening our social safety net

Québec’s next budget will largely determine our collective ability to get through this crisis and the next ones. Let’s tell the government we want a clear commitment to tax justice and social justice. Quebecers have suffered enough from reduced investment in public services and social programs. The APTS urges you to sign a petition put forward by the Coalition Main rouge asking the government for a commitment to strengthening our social safety net (#filetsocial).

Work/family balance and atypical schedules

Québec’s Observatoire des réalités familiales has produced an excellent document (in French) on the realities of work/family balance for parents whose schedule is atypical. The Observatoire is also organizing a roundtable with experts on the phenomenon of work/family balance for parents with changing, evening, or night schedules (among others). This virtual noon-hour talk will take place on Wednesday, January 27, from noon to 1:30 pm. We know many of you are facing this situation. We hope to see you there!