Employee not eligible for wage increase after performing duties of higher classification

Worker not directed by employer to perform Level J duties

Clara Morino filed a grievance against the Toronto District School Board after the employer assigned her the duties of a higher classification but failed to pay her the applicable rate of pay.

Morino — classified as a Level H office assistant — was assigned by the employer to the guidance office.

Her union, the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 4400, maintained that in her position with the guidance office, Morino performed duties commensurate with the responsibilities of a Level J senior office assistant.

In fact, Morino was trained in Level J duties by her predecessor in the guidance office, the union said.

In March 2014, Morino was asked to update her listed job duties. She did so, including a number of Level J duties she had been instructed to perform.

However, when she received the updated copy of her duties in June 2014, she found it differed from the list she had submitted and that a number of duties were missing.

After inquiring about her listed duties, Morino was told to address the issue with her school’s principal. Morino did raise the issue in August 2014, and a meeting was held in September 2014.

When nothing changed, Morino and CUPE filed a grievance in February 2015.

According to the employer, Morino was not assigned or expected to perform the Level J core functions. While Morino may have performed some of those duties to a “limited extent,” she did not fulfill the functions of the Level J position.

Arbitrator sides with employer
According to arbitrator Tanja Wacyk, Morino would have had to have been “transferred” to a Level J position for a period of more than one working day in order for her to be entitled to remuneration consistent with the performance of Level J duties.

In order for such a transfer to occur, Wacyk said, the union would have to demonstrate Morino was assigned, expected or relied upon to substantially perform the core job duties of the Level J position which were not also a normal function of her classification.

“I am unable to determine the grievor was assigned, expected and/or relied upon to substantially perform the core job duties of the Level J position,” Wacyk said.

“While the grievor maintains she was directed to perform the Level J duties, it appears this refers to her training by her predecessor. However, there was no evidence that individual had any authority to direct the grievor to perform duties above her classification. Rather, it appears she simply trained the grievor in the position.”

As a result, the grievance was denied.

Reference: Toronto District School Board and the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 4400. Tanja Wacyk — arbitrator. Simon Mortimer for the employer, Megan Reid for the union. May 25, 2016.

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