March 29, 2023 at 4:00 PM
As previously explained in our recent message, some members have expressed their concerns about the GIDIP Plan. The Unifor Air Canada Bargaining Committee have forwarded the comments to the GIDIP Trustees and have asked them to gather some answers. We are expecting a reply from them shortly.
Meanwhile, The Bargaining Committee have prepared this informative Q&A on the plan. We hope that it will help members to better understand the mechanics of the GIDIP plan.
What is GIDIP?
GIDIP is our "Group Insurance Disability Income Program", which provides members of Unifor Local 2002 with short- and long-term benefits when we are unable to work due to sickness or injury.
Who are the beneficiaries of GIDIP?
Members of Unifor Local 2002 who have contributed for at least 30 days benefit from this plan, with hundreds receiving benefits each year in line with Employment Insurance (EI) on a non-taxable basis. As you might be aware, the Federal EI and employer-paid plans are fully taxable, whereas GIDIP is not.
Who is responsible for the GIDIP program?
Unifor Local 2002 oversees the plan through a Board of Trustees. This helps to safeguard your confidential medical information and provides members with the most favourable type and terms of coverage.
How much is the premium?
The GIDIP rate is 3.542% of your hourly wage.
How can Unifor members raise concerns with the plan?
As a democratic institution, Unifor Local 2002 Local Executive and GIDIP Trustee Board is always open to listening to members about concerns and ideas. Recently, and especially in light of challenges we all face with the increasing cost of living, some members expressed concerns regarding the cost of the GIDIP plan.
The Board of Trustees for GIDIP planned a tour of the workplace across the country to meet with members to hear your concerns in-person and answer any questions about the plan. The first meetings took place in Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary and Winnipeg, though relatively very few members participated in the meetings, we will continue to listen to all issues and concerns and support our members.
Can members propose changes to plan to lower its cost?
Members are welcome to propose ideas at any time through the Board of GIDIP trustees. The GIDIP premiums are and have remained at 3.542% of our hourly wage for more than 10 years. The GIDIP Board of Trustees is always mindful of keeping the cost of the plan as low as possible for the level of benefits that our members expect from the plan. If you have any ideas about changes to the level of coverage or other ideas about reducing the cost, please forward to the GIDIP trustee for your region.
Wages, on the other hand, are definitely an issue that will be in the top priorities at the next round of bargaining. If you have ideas or concerns for the next round of bargaining, please make sure to attend and participate in the proposal meetings at the beginning of the process leading up to collective bargaining. Ultimately, members set the priorities for the Bargaining Committee.
How are GIDIP premiums affected by the new Pay Equity Legislation?
The federal government recently passed a new Pay Equity Legislation in parliament. This new law requires federally regulated employers like Air Canada to develop a proactive Pay Equity Plan for its employees. This plan has to be developed by a Pay Equity Committee which must include at least one committee member from each bargaining unit, and 50% of committee members must be women. The goal of the new law is to ensure that workers receive equal pay for work of equal value.
Unifor Local 2002, along with the other unions representing workers at Air Canada, are part of the committee that will evaluate all Air Canada jobs and ensure our members receive their fair share of compensation. This process is already underway and has a deadline of FALL 2024. We will keep members posted on the results.
The Pay Equity legislation does not set any requirements or dictate any changes to GIDIP premiums. GIDIP premiums are determined by the cost of delivering the level of coverage that the plan provides.
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