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February 5,2014

It is with sadness but understanding that we accept Kim Rushnell's resignation from the Local Executive. Kim has been a dedicated steward, safety rep, secretary and all around leader in the past several years advocating for our members rights and safety in the workplace. Her perseverance, strength and experience has been a proven asset to this local. We cannot thank her enough for her contributions. We wish Kim all the very best.

In the meantime, Gabriela Turnbull RPN has been appointed to Acting Secretary until elections take place.

Gabriela can be reached at gabriela@opseu331.org


April 2, 2013

At the General membership meeting tonight Mary Bloomfield was elected as Chief Steward to replace outgoing Chief Yvonne Lewis.  Congratulations Mary! Mary is a long-time steward and will bring experience, committment and passion to her new role.

 Mary can be reached at mary@opseu331.org.  

February 27, 2013


The time has come to wish Yvonne Lewis a fond farewell as she has now retired from our workplace.  Having worked as an RPN for over 30 years, she has also been actively involved in OPSEU throughout her career wearing a number of hats including Unit Steward, 'cheerleader', Vice President, 'rabble rouser', 'The General' and Chief Steward, and Local President. 

Yvonne has been  a warrior, a fierce and staunch activist, and a relentless advocate for staff rights and  Health & Safety in our workplace.  Standing up for fairness for all whether a patient, staff, or member of the public, Yvonne’s actions during her brief tenure as President resulted in important Local victories including the reinstatement of a terminated staff--an achievement unheard of at our Local,  advocated for improved workplace conditions to include better safety measures,  developed pro-active strategies to support inclusive workplaces for the returning worker, and  battled both management and WSIB to recognize occupational illness and solve the ongoing safety issues that our worksite experiences every day.  Her tenacity to advocate for the health and safety of staff has now resulted in one of the largest ongoing investigations of workplace violence at this facility by the Ministry of Labour. And her actions were even recognized this year when she won the Health&Safety Advocate Award for Durham Region!

Yvonne  performed all these duties and more, tirelessly, and at all hours of the day frequently taking late night phone calls from distressed and assaulted workers, and writing up countless grievances, wsib appeals, and papers during early morning hours to prepare Union foundations to defend positions against management opposition.  It was also a far too frequent occurrence for Yvonne to attend to Union issues on her days off, even going so far as to personally support and escort injured workers in their attempts to reintegrate into public spaces. 

Yvonne lives by the motto that no one should have to risk personal safety in order to make a living, (and god help the person or organization that dares to breach this). But despite her extraordinary abilities and tenacity Yvonne remains the most humble individual you will ever meet, always rising to the challenge without ever wanting recognition.  And her ethics are unsurpassed. 

It has been our extraordinary pleasure and good fortune to work side by side with her and we will miss her terribly but have her assurance that she is only ‘a phone call away’.

Thank you Yvonne from all of us on the Executive and from the membership of Local 331.  

February 1, 2013

The April 1st 2013 OPSEU salary increase will be reflected on the April 25, 2013 employee pay (due to pay being two weeks in arrears).   There is no retro payment this year because April 1st falls on a Monday and beginning of a pay period.   HR and Payroll will both be posting notices on our HR Intranet sites, in order to advise employees accordingly.  Should you have any questions, please call our office.

January 7, 2013

OPSEU mini calendars are available at our office for anyone who missed receiving one on the Units.

And a reminder that our General Membership meeting is on Tuesday January 15 at 6:00 p.m. at Oshawa Regional Office.  Nominations for both the annual OPSEU Convention and BPS Convention will be done at this time.

December 21, 2012

Wishing all of our members a very Merry Christmas.  We feel very lucky to be associated with so many fine people.  Enjoy the holidays and stay safe.  And to all a very Happy New Year's!

December 1, 2012

Patti Lang is now officially in the President's Chair.  A huge thank you to Yvonne Lewis who ran the ship for the past two years and did so with the utmost class and dignity.  Yvonne now takes on the role of Chief Steward.

As always the Executive can be reached at #6351, Patti at #6478.

Durham Region Labour Council AwardsNovember 15, 2012

It gives us great pleasure to announce that two Local 331 members have again won Labour Council Awards.  Like our own Patti Lang last year, President Yvonne Lewis has won the 2012 Worker's Health and Safety Centre Activist Award for her tireless advocacy on behalf of our staff.  In addition, RN Norma Gunn has won the OFL (Ontario Federation of Labour) 2012 Occupational Disability Advocacy Recognition Award for sharing her struggle with PTSD. 

These awards were presented at the Durham Region Labour Council awards dinner on November 15, 2012.

Deserving awards for two extraordinary worker advocates!

RN Norma Gunn receives award from OFL representative.

Dinner attendees from our Local included worker members of

J.O.H.S.C. and Sherry Weese, Opseu Region 3 Staff Rep.

Christmas Party Dates!

Mark your calendars and book your time off.  331 Children's Christmas Party is Sunday December 2, again at the Oshawa Shriner's Club;  331 member party is December 9, again at Melanie Pringle's.

Kid's party details here and staff party here.

Both will be almazing events!

Please Be Aware!

Due to recent complaints, we are recommending that all staff exercise the right to union representation when meeting with Occupational Health.  Members ARE entitled to representation for any and all meetings.

Further to that the courts recognize the Union:

- as an equal partner

- to support accommodation efforts

- moral obligation

- legal responsibility

- protects rights of others by ensuring Employer/member does not deviate from our Collective Agreement unless all other accommodation efforts has been exhausted

- under recognition clause in every Collective Agreement

- Elected Union is the Keeper of the Contract and has entitlement to be at table.

This includes any type of accommodation need not just WSIB.


Furthermore courts recognize that it is a Union violation each and everytime an accomodation, alteration to work, or alternative work is agreed upon without the union present as this is seen as clearly bargaining outside of our C. A.

So in order to protect yourselves, always take a representative to your meetings!

Thank you to everyone who attended our  July Local 331 Staff Appreciation Event.  It was another great success...huge turnout!  

  • Winners of the Gift Certificates  are Kathy Brown, PRA , Rene Bodashefsky, DDS, and Larry Sheenhan, FRU.  These can be picked up at our office.

  • The unit Union boards have been updated with new posters:

- Family Picnic August 11th Emily Park - free to members and their families.  Lots of activities for the kids!

- Discounts for Toronto FC, Indoor Waterpark, Ontario Science Centre and Baka

- Steward List and Updated Safety Rep list

  • We have learned that some areas are missing Union Boards, please advise if this is or becomes an issue in your area!

  • September Education registration applications are available at our Office or online at www.opseu.org under 'Education'.  

  • Christmas Parties are booked. Please watch for future details.  

  • Safety issues continue to be an issue throughout the Centre. If your areas are experiencing unsafe Units, work practices or equipment and these hazards have been brought forward to your manager, please advise one of the Health and Safety reps. for follow-up and assistance.  

If anyone has other concerns or question please feel free to bring it forward to the Union Office for assistance.

Wishing everyone a safe and happy summer!

Collective Agreement!

 Collective Agreement books are available.   Please visit the Union Office to receive your copy.   Covers are in bright fuschia, you can't miss them!