OPIRG-Brock & CUPE 4207 Assessment Update

Dear CUPE 4207 Member,

Your Executive Committee would like to provide you with an update regarding a recent change to the Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG-Brock) and CUPE 4207 Assessment.

The CUPE 4207-OPIRG Brock Assessment Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is a document signed by both CUPE 4207 and OPIRG Brock. At the March 2020 General Membership Meeting, the membership voted to collect an assessment of 0.25% from all CUPE 4207 member wages, which would be sent to OPIRG Brock directly each month.

CUPE 4207 members pay 2.5% in union dues, which include 0.85% to CUPE National and 0.04% to CUPE Ontario. The 0.25% CUPE 4207-OPIRG Brock MOU assessment was bundled in with CUPE 4207 Union dues to total a 2.75% deduction on member’s biweekly pay.

In the Spring of 2023, the Executive Committee discussed some queries from CUPE 4207 members about the assessment (for example: what it was, how the funds were being used, what social advocacy groups were being funded by the assessment, if charitable tax documents would be supplied, and whether they could opt out). The Executive Committee felt they had a responsibility to answer member questions and address any concerns that members brought forward.

A letter to OPIRG-Brock was sent in August of 2023 by CUPE 4207 to notify them that changes to the assessment might happen. An ad-hoc committee was struck at the September General Membership Meeting to discuss the relationship between CUPE 4207 and OPIRG-Brock and how to move forward. The ad-hoc committee prepared a report and submitted it to the membership in January of 2024 for review and it was accepted. At the same January 2024 General Membership Meeting, there was a motion to eliminate the OPIRG-Brock Assessment on March 31st, 2024. The motion was voted on by members; the motion passed to end the CUPE 4207 and OPIRG-Brock assessment of 0.25%.

Following the vote, the Executive Committee informed Brock University’s Payroll department to make the necessary deduction adjustment from 2.75% to 2.5% beginning April 1st, 2024. The Payroll department indicated that April 7th was the easiest time to make the change in their system. As 4207 members are paid with a one week lag, April 29th will be the first payroll to reflect the 2.5% deduction.

The Executive Committee will continue to work with OPIRG-Brock. The working relationship is not ending, just changing, and we will be meeting with OPIRG-Brock in the coming weeks. The Local is still very committed to supporting social activism and advocacy initiatives in our community, and will do so on a project-by-project basis or as the need arises.

For those of you who wish to donate to OPIRG directly, please contact OPIRG-Brock and they will help facilitate this. Here is the link to their website for more information:  https://www.opirgbrock.com/

If you have any questions, please reach out to us at info@cupe4207.org .

In Solidarity,

Your Executive Committee

CUPE 4207