According to the UNA Provincial Collective Agreement, employees are required to submit 75 per cent of their vacation entitlements for a year in the vacation schedule planner by March 15.
Article 17.03 of the collective agreement states that the employer shall post the vacation schedule planner by Jan. 1 each year. It says the employer shall indicate approval or disapproval of vacation requests submitted by March 15 and post the resulting vacation schedule by April 30 of each year.
The employer has an obligation to provide guidance as to the reasonable number of employees for each unit, program or site who may be granted vacation at the same time.
It is important to remember that this is a guideline. It is important for employees to check if this number is in fact reasonable. For example if the employee is working on a large unit and the number of employees who can be away per day would result in not all employees being able to utilize their full vacation banks, the number would not be reasonable.
Vacation approval delayed or pending?
At most UNA sites, the employer must inform the employee of approval or denial of their requests on the vacation planner by April 30.
If there is a delay in the approval beyond the deadline, or if the employer says it is pending, the employee should consider their vacation denied and initiate a grievance immediately. If an employee believes vacation time has been inappropriately assigned, they may also file a grievance.
For example, if an employee has applied for a week block vacation and the employer approves Monday and Tuesday, but not Wednesday, and approves Thursday and Saturday, but not Friday, that is effectively a denial of her vacation. The employee should grieve this type of denial.
Grievances should be filed within 10 days (excluding weekends and named holidays) of April 30 or from the day you were informed of vacation decisions, whichever is earlier.
The UNA Provincial Collective Agreement does not provide for a standing, or pending vacation request. If circumstances change such that a previously denied vacation period becomes available, the employee will need to submit a new vacation request for consideration.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your UNA local executive or Labour Relations Officer at 1-800-252-9394.