OTTAWA, ONTARIO–Members of the Professional Association of Foreign Service Officers (PAFSO) have ratified a tentative agreement with the Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS). By the close of the vote, at 4 p.m. on June 25, a clear majority had voted in support of the agreement reached earlier this month.
PAFSO, the union representing the 1,600 employees of Canada’s diplomatic service, had declared an impasse in the collective bargaining process earlier this year. In the lead up to an arbitral hearing set to take place later this summer, PAFSO’s Collective Bargaining Committee worked tirelessly with its counterparts on the Employer’s side to reach the tentative deal.
“I am happy to report that we have ratified an agreement which, in addition to many significant economic gains, carries several other significant improvements,” said Pamela Isfeld, President of PAFSO. “From provisions concerning the health and safety of our members, to improvements to maternity and parental leave, to an important new domestic violence leave clause, this agreement represents an important step forward for our members.”
PAFSO and TBS are currently in the process of establishing a date for the formal signature of the agreement.
In stark contrast to previous agreements which expired days after they were signed, the new agreement is set to remain in effect until June 30, 2022.
“For the first time in my memory as a Foreign Service officer, the FS Group will have an extant collective agreement for more than just a few months at a time,” said Isfeld.