News Archive – Relief


April 21,2021: Replacing a Co-Worker at a Higher Paygrade

A reminder that if you replace a co-worker who holds a position with a higher paygrade than you, after 3 consecutive full shifts you are entitled to “Substitution in Higher Wage Category” for the entirety of the time you work in the temporary position, under Clause 20.2 of our Collective Agreement.

In order that we all follow the same  procedures, it is a recommended “best practice” for you to remind your Supervisor via email of your entitlement to this bump in pay for services provided. It is also best to cc the Manager of Caretaking Services in on your email, as it is ultimately his approval that is needed to move the payment forward.

This also provides your Union with a paper trail if something goes askew.

If we all follow the same procedures with reasonable consistency, it is less likely for someone to “fall through the cracks”.

Know your rights.

Read your Collective Agreement.

It is available in both the Resources & Members section of this website.


Feb 22,2021: Relief Keys for P3 schools

Discussions were had with Caretaking management regarding access to P3 schools for Relief Caretakers. The P3 operator only issues a certain number of codes & keys for each site for security reasons. If all of the Relief Caretakers were to be given access, it would be an additional 10-15 keys/codes PER SCHOOL. This is currently more than the total they choose to disperse. Access to these sites, though inconvenient, will need to remain status quo. Relief Caretakers needing to access these sites will need to either have a supervisor meet you for morning access or get access from other employees onsite upon arrival during the workday.

Again, not an optimal situation…but it is the decision of the P3 operator to make, not the District.


Dec 30,2020: Custodial Staff relief during COVID-19

As you all know, custodial resources have been stretched thin in 2020. Along with all the usual absences for sickness, injury, disability, training, & vacation, we have had to work with fewer people due to absences created by legal requirements of COVID-19 health protocols. Going into the new year, CUPE 520 will be attempting to track the frequency at which our regular Caretakers & Cleaners are not replaced with Relief Staff for their assigned shift.

Caretakers, if a member of the custodial staff is not replaced at your worksite, please email the details (Caretaker or Cleaner, date, day or evening shift, number of hours) to so that we can create a broader view of the issue.

As you may know, high schools operate on a modified Staffing Formula to ensure a ready supply of a few extra Cleaners in each quadrant of the city. That being said, high school Head Caretakers should also send in their own observations so that the Union can calculate any patterns of discrepancies that may appear excessive.

Although students will not yet have returned to school, please begin forwarding your observations on Monday January 4 so that we can begin to identify any noticeable patterns.

Please supply only the requested information for dates moving forward. Additional commentary or history of past instances will not be helpful, as we are endeavoring to identify patterns present in the new year.