Arbitration continued on February 26 & 28, 2020. Canada Post has now completed its evidence in chief. Our next arbitration dates are March 25th, 27th and 31st.
Leah Lewis completed her testimony and was then cross-examined by our counsel. Her attitude did not change and she continued to maintain that we have “a vast amount of paid leave” in response to our demand for access to paid leave for other reasons (special leave) for an illness in the family without first exhausting all personal days. It didn’t seem to matter to her that most of the other paid leaves could not be used for an illness in the family. Her response to our other demands on the Short Term Disability Plan, some of which have no cost, was just as dismissive. Our counsel did an excellent job challenging her evidence.
Canada Post then introduced its last witness, Robert Bass, Principle of Bass and Associates. He is recognized by Arbitrator MacPherson as an expert in “comparative compensation”.
Robert Bass compared the total compensation of urban employees to DHL, UPS and Purolator. Despite the report being lengthy, he did not mention the compensation of RSMCs in comparison to any other group of workers. He also testified on the urban injury on duty pay and how it was equivalent to our competitor’s. Finally, he testified about the average pay increases for various other companies. In his report and in his testimony, he felt that a lower wage increase would allow the competitors to “catch up”.
Now that Canada Post has completed it’s case, we will begin our reply evidence on March 25, 2020. There is a possibility that Canada Post will have a chance to respond to our evidence we submit on the 25th. Our goal is to complete final arguments by May 7th, 2020, have the arbitrator write her decision and present it to the parties before or around the end of June, 2020.