CEO Update

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CEO Update - May 2014

Joint Sector Committee Meeting

At the end of April, the Joint Sector Committee comprised of representatives from CSSEA and the CSSBA met for the first time since the ratification of the new collective agreements, to discuss implementation and issues of concern to both parties.

At the meeting we discussed the implementation of the mandatory Early Intervention Program, benefit issues and the composition of the committees outlined in the collective agreements.

The meetings are an opportunity for CSSEA and the CSSBA to have open and frank discussions in order to solve issues and explore possible solutions in a non-adversarial setting. We look forward to continuing to foster a positive relationship with the CSSBA to achieve employers goals for the sector.…

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CEO Update - March 2014

$400,000 Labour Market Adjustment Distribution

CSSEA has begun distributing to members their share of the one-time $400,000 Labour Market Adjustment (LMA) funds negotiated in the 2012-2014 round of bargaining to address retention issues for specific classifications in the sector.

The classifications listed below were agreed by a joint committee of CSSEA and the CSSBA in the Agreement Re: Allocation of LMA between CSSEA and the Community Social Services Bargaining Association (CSSBA).

 Eligible LMA Classifications

JJEP Classifications

Paraprofessional Classifications

School Aged Child Worker


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CEO Update - February 2014

Ratified Collective Agreement

 I’m very pleased the sector successfully ratified the 2014-2019 collective agreements. These agreements are a major step forward to address the main bargaining priority of employers, recruitment and retention, by closing the wage gap with Community Health.

 The five-year terms of the agreements are also significant because it will bring long term labour stability to the sector and allow CSSEA time to implement cost containment strategies such as:

  • Mandatory early intervention program for injured employees.
  • Centralized drug dispensing for maintenance drugs (CSBT pilot).
  • Developing new strategies to reduce WorkSafeBC premiums.…

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CEO Update - January 2014

Tentative Collective Agreements

 I hope everyone had a chance to unwind and relax during the holidays and are now ready for another exciting year ahead, as it is an important time for the sector.

The year started with the sector in the midst of ratifying another round of collective agreements. At CSSEA our focus in January has been on holding information meetings for members, funding agencies, benefit providers and government, and more importantly answering questions from members regarding the new tentative agreements. 

Overall both the bargaining committee and I believe the three tentative collective agreements are a major step forward for the sector and finally start to address some of the shortcomings of the past.…

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CEO Update - December 2013

2013 Annual General Meeting

I am pleased CSSEA’s 2013 AGM has now concluded with the selection of the divisional panel members, board chair and board members, and the 2014 bargaining committee. I would like to congratulate Anne Nikon and Lilla Tipton on being selected as board chair and vice chair respectively and the rest of the newly selected board and panel members. I look forward to working with all of you over the next year.

Visit CSSEA’s website for a complete list of the board, panels and bargaining committee.

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CEO Update - November 2013

AGM Reconvenes - November 14

Members are reminded the Annual General Meeting (AGM) adjourned by the membership on October 1, 2013 in Nanaimo will reconvene tomorrow Thursday, November 14, 2013 in Vancouver at the Sheraton Vancouver Wall Centre, Pavilion Ballroom, 3rd Floor, South Tower, 1088 Burrard St.

Members can register at the hotel and registration for the AGM is free. We understand the financial hardship attending a second day of meeting presents to many members; however the membership at the meeting in Nanaimo felt it was important to provide ample time for the service divisions to have discussions before concluding the business of the AGM.

In addition to completing the important business of the AGM, at the meeting I will be updating the membership on the status of the preliminary discussions with the Community Social Services Bargaining Association (CSSBA) to develop a framework for 2014 bargaining.  Earlier this week the Health Sciences Professionals Bargaining Association, representing 17,000 health science professionals, reached a five-year tentative deal with Health Employers Association of BC which includes the following highlights:

  • Wage increase totalling 5.5 per cent over five years; with a possibility for improvements dependent on the performance of BC's economy (Economic Stability Dividend)
    • A "me-too" clause. If other comparable public sector compensation increases exceed these increases, then the HSPBA collective agreement will be adjusted by an across-the-board percentage increase to match those compensation increases…

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CEO Update - July 2013

Doing Things Better - A Dialogue with Government

Over the past few months, I have been in dialogue with members, government and unions about the opportunity to explore how the sector could do things differently in order to address current challenges and ensure members can continue to provide quality services to their clients.

Prior to the conclusion of bargaining, CSSEA began the process of organizing a meeting to follow the election, bringing together panel members, unions and Deputy Ministers. At the request of government the list was expanded to include other stakeholders from the sector. To achieve representation that more accurately reflected the sector, CSSEA invited additional member agencies, but kept the total number of participants to 30 to encourage dialogue and discussion. The meeting was held on Friday, July 26, at the offices of Ernst & Young in Vancouver, the same firm that helped CSSEA’s board develop our strategic plan in 2012.

Government opened the discussion by outlining the current financial environment as expressed in the recent provincial budget and that based on the forecast for the next two years it is unlikely that there will be any new funding for the sector. Therefore, it is up to the sector including government ministries to work towards finding savings through additional efficiencies.…

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CEO Update - June 2013

Collective Agreements Implementation

Since the ratification of the sectoral collective agreements in late April, I have had a number of discussions with members regarding their challenges in providing compensation increases to employees without receiving funding for the collective agreements wage increases.

On April 19, CSSEA met with representatives of all sectoral funders to provide them with a detailed breakdown of the cost increases itemized by funder. More recently on May 30 and 31 we met with officials from the Ministry of Social Development (MSD), Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) and Public Sector Employers’ Council (PSEC). At these meetings we articulated the cost implications of the new agreements and the problem with the mixed messages being delivered by program managers in their regions contributing to the confusion and angst among Executive Directors and Boards.

At each meeting CSSEA reiterated that not only did we deliver the 2012-2014 collective agreements within the Cooperative Gains mandate, but throughout the bargaining process we were clear and transparent with MSD, MCFD and PSEC about the cost implications for our sector of the compensation increases.
However due to the recent election and because the new Cabinet has only recently been sworn in, Ministry staff have been unable to discuss or provide further clarity regarding funding questions until they have briefed their respective Ministers.…

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CEO Update - April 2013

Ratification Information Meetings

Over the past few weeks, I have been very busy travelling across the province to meet with members to discuss the changes made in the new tentative agreements and to answer your questions. During my tour I have been impressed by the level of engagement by members.

As a result of your questions and comments at these meeting, we have posted a list of Frequently Asked Questions to the members section of the website to improve understanding of the agreements.

Additionally, I would like to remind members who could not attend a meeting in person that I will be holding a Webinar Conference Call to discuss the tentative agreements on Friday, April 12 at 10:00 AM. To register for the meeting visit:

Ratification Voting Process

Ratification votes for the tentative agreements for each division are scheduled to be conducted electronically between 8:00 AM Monday, April 15 and 5:00 PM (Pacific Time) Thursday, April 18, 2013.…

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CEO Update - March 2013


Following 12 months of bargaining and a marathon 14 consecutive days of negotiations in February and the beginning of March, we were able to reach tentative two-year agreements for Community Living Services and General Services.  The tentative agreements deliver on the bargaining priorities for employers and the bargaining teams are recommending ratification.  

Entering negotiations the three key priorities for employers were recruitment and retention, controlling benefit costs and management flexibility and these agreements provide improvements in all three areas.

The agreements provide for increases in compensation for employees that starts to close the gap with Community Health, institutes programs to control the rising cost of benefits and long term disability, and increases management flexibility in a number of areas. Increases to compensation are funded through savings identified under the cooperative gains mandate.…

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CEO Update - February 2013

Bargaining 2012

While the parties did not meet in January, CSSEA and the Union Bargaining Association (UBA) have agreed to return to the bargaining table and the unions have agreed to suspend all job action until further notice.

A preliminary meeting is scheduled for Friday, February 15, and bargaining will resume the following week.

Remember to check CSSEA’s website for updates or contact Kathie Best ( This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) if you have bargaining related questions.…

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Communications Contact

Doris Sun
Director of Communications
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