Ontario is asked to change legislation to permit the transfer of pension assets to the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS).
Toronto (18 Sept. 2009) - Premier Dalton McGuinty is being petitioned by supporters of the paramedics in Simcoe County to amend provincial legislation that is unfairly affecting their pensions.
"In the late 1990s paramedic services were divested to Simcoe County," says Jamie Ramage, chair of the Ambulance Division for the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/NUPGE).
"Although jobs were reassigned, pensions were not. Unfortunately this has resulted in significantly reduced pensions, as Simcoe County paramedics’ years of credited service have not been recognized. This injustice occurred because existing regulation forbids the transfer of their pension assets from the Hospital of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP) or the OPSEU Pension Trust (OPTrust) to the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS)."
OPSEU is urging McGuinty to support a resolution by Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson calling on the province to allow those affected by the divestment of paramedic services in the 1990s and beyond to transfer their pensions to OMERS from HOOPP or OPTrust.
They are also appealing to fellow paramedics, OPSEU members and supporters everywhere to back their petition. Please click on the links below.
"We are asking that you and your family and friends along with other members of your community download, print and sign the PDF version of the petition and return it to your OPSEU local president or steward," Ramage says.
"These petitions will be presented by Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson and other MPPs when the Provincial Legislature resumes in early fall. Our goal is to put enough pressure on the Ontario government so that the legislation is changed, allowing all workers affected by divestments to obtain the pension they justly deserve."
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE