At the risk of explaining the evidence, unless a worker is covered by one of the exceptions to overtime law, the code specifies that any agreement that deprives a worker of his legal right to overtime is illegal and unenforceable. An agreement has been reached between the City of Winnipeg and the Winnipeg Public Utilities Association. “WAPSO has requested an interest rate arbitration in accordance with the terms of the collective agreement. The city hopes a negotiated solution can be found,” said David Driedger, a spokesman for the city. The City and WAPSO were parties to a collective agreement (the “agreement”) that recognized that workers were expected to work all normal hours of work, plus 100 overtime hours per year, in exchange for their regular wages and five (5) days of compensation time. The agreement made it clear that there would be no additional compensation (monetary or otherwise) in exchange for the first 100 overtime hours of a worker in a calendar year. The board found that such an agreement was contrary to the overtime provisions of the code. The Court of Appeal found that the reasons for this conclusion were reasonable and summarized it as follows: the notion of employers and workers agreeing that wages should include and work overtime has been pursued in Manitoba. The Manitoba Court of Appeal in Nygard/. Michalowski considered a decision of the Manitoba Labour Board (the “Board”), which considered the legality of an employment contract that purported to pay a worker a wage in exchange for all hours of work. In that case, the employer argued that such an agreement was not contrary to the overtime provisions of the code, as the parties had agreed that the worker`s salary would be made in exchange for possible overtime. Wapso Members, this week`s vote on ratification of collective agreements has been counted and we are pleased to announce that the agreement has been ratified by membership. The city says its executive committee will consider ratifying the agreement next week and will then go to the council for approval.
Editor`s Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that the agreement had been reached between the City of Winnipeg and the association representing its police officers. Peter`s work in the field of labour and labour law includes the activity of chief negotiator for the management of collective bargaining, the defence of illegal dismissal actions, and practical advice to clients working in both non-unionized and unionized enterprises, including the handling of complaints and arbitrations under collective agreements.