Phoenix Damages Update

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

The 2019 Memorandum of Agreement on Phoenix Damages, to which the AJC is a party, includes a catch-up clause which provides that the parties to the agreement will receive any additional benefits that may be negotiated by other federal unions. The 2019 MOA on Phoenix Damages gave members up to five days of paid leave as compensation for Phoenix issues. For most AJC members, this had a greater cash value than the PSAC settlement of $1,500, along with greater flexibility in that it could be taken as leave, banked as leave or cashed out.

However, for members with a salary of less than $78,264 ($300 per day) we have negotiated an additional (taxable) cash settlement to make up the difference (your days of leave are not affected; this is additional compensation, not a replacement). If that applies to you, you may be eligible for as many top-up payments as you received days of leave for General Compensation. The amount of the top-up payment is equal to the difference between $300 and your daily rate of pay, which may be different for each of the fiscal years. The payment will only apply if the difference is more than $10.

As well, the AJC has reached an agreement with TB and the parties have agreed to match the $1,000 settlement reached with PSAC for late implementation of the Collective Agreement. This means that some members will be eligible for a taxable lump-sum payment of up to $1000 based on the years you were working:

  • · $400 for 2016-17, and
  • · $200 for each of the 2017-18, 2018-19, and 2019-20 fiscal years.

No action is needed on your part at this time. The lump sum payments of up to $1,000 and individual top-ups are expected to be paid out in the Fall of this year. This is another significant win for all of us affected by the Phoenix payroll fiasco.

As a reminder, the 2019 MOA on Damages provides compensation for damages to employees who suffered financial and non-financial damages due to issues with their pay caused by the Phoenix Pay System. Claims are submitted and assessed under three different tiers:

  • General Compensation (Current Employees (Tier 1A, days of leave) and Former Employees (Tier 1B, payment in lieu of leave))
  • Financial costs and lost investment income (Tier 2)
  • Severe impacts and other demonstrable cases (Tier 3)

As of December 31, 2020, the number of claims related to the MOA on Damages (Tier 1B and Tier 2) was 8,887. Total reimbursed amount is $8.94M. We recognize that no one would be getting any kind of compensation if it wasn’t for the dedicated diligent work of your union representatives. It is our firm belief that without unions, and without the AJC in particular, there would have been no compensation deal at all.  It was the AJC’s policy grievance that got the whole damages ball rolling long before anyone else was even thinking about damages.   It was our collective strength that got the employer to the table.

If you have any questions, please consult our FAQs on Phoenix Damages and on Phoenix Pay Issues and contact your regional Governing Council representative. (531 words)