CUPE 1281 Convention

*Updated as of May 14, 2020*

The CUPE 1281 Convention will take place on Monday, July 20, 2020 from 10 am to 4 pm. The CUPE 1281 Executive have made the tough decision to hold Convention online this year to ensure the safety of members and so that online preparations for the meeting can begin.

Who can attend the CUPE 1281 Convention?

Each sub-unit delegation consists of the sub-unit delegates elected from among the membership of the sub-unit. One delegate position is held by the Steward, and the others are determined according to the PBUs (number of positions in the bargaining unit ). Please see below for how many delegates your sub-unit is permitted to bring.

1-5 PBUs = 1 delegate
6-10 PBUs = 2 delegates
11-20 PBUs = 3 delegates
21-40 PBUs = 4 delegates
41-80 PBUs = 5 delegates
Sub-locals with 80 PBUs or more are entitled to 6 delegates

Example: if your sub-unit has 15 members total (including the Steward), you are entitled to your Steward’s attendance plus 3 additional delegates, i.e. your total voting delegation will consist of 4 people.

What elections and appointments will take place at the CUPE 1281 Convention?

CUPE 1281 Executive positions

  • President
  • Vice-President
  • Secretary-Treasurer
  • Recording Secretary
  • Two (2) Co-chief stewards
  • Communications Officer
  • Equity Officer

    CUPE 1281 Committee appointments

  • Membership Committee
  • Governance Committee
  • Organizing Committee

    CUPE 1281 Trustees

  • Trustee (Three-year position)
  • Trustee (Two-year position)
  • Trustee (One-year position)

    Delegates to District Labour Councils and CUPE Council

  • Toronto & York Region Labour Council (1 positions)
  • Ottawa District Labour Council (2 positions)
  • Hamilton District Labour Council (2 positions)
  • Peterborough District Labour Council (3 positions)
  • Guelph District Labour Council (3 positions)
  • Waterloo Regional Labour Council (1 position)
  • St. John’s Labour Council (1 position)
  • Kingston District Labour Council (1 position)
  • Windsor District Labour Council (1 position)
  • Peel Regional District Council (1 position)
  • Central Western Ontario District CUPE Council (Guelph and Waterloo) (2 delegates + 1 alternate)
  • Eastern Great Lakes District CUPE Council (Kingston) (4 delegates, unlimited alternates)
  • Durham Region Labour Council (2 positions + 2 alternates)
  • Halifax-Dartmouth District Labour Council (3 positions)
  • Toronto District CUPE Council (4 positions)
  • Ottawa District CUPE Council (4 positions)
  • Hamilton District CUPE Council (President + 3 delegates + 4 alternates)
  • Windsor District CUPE Council (2 positions)
  • Durham & Northumberland CUPE Council (4 positions, unlimited alternates)
  • Niagara District CUPE Council (2 delegates)
  • Region of Peel CUPE Council (3 delegates)

    Delegates to CLC events, CUPE events and committees

  • Canadian Labour Council Conference (1 delegate)
  • CUPE-Ontario Convention (President, 4 delegates, 1 retiree delegate)
  • CUPE-Ontario Racial Justice & Human Rights Conference (4 delegates)
  • CUPE-Ontario University Workers’ Coordinating Committee (2 delegates + 1 alternate)
  • CUPE National Convention (President + 2 delegates)

    The full listing of the CUPE 1281 Election Positions can be found here.

  • COVID-19 Resources for Workers

    We are living in challenging and fluctuating times due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Responses by the government and our employers mean major impacts will be felt by all workers in Canada. 

    Here are some resources that will help you navigate some of the issues. If you have any specific concerns regarding your CUPE 1281 Collective Agreement and a situation with your employer, please follow up with the Local or your Staff Representative.

    CUPE Coronavirus fact sheet:

    Government links

    Union COVID-19 resource links

    Related resources


    This is a check list for people in work that is necessary for operations to continue, where there is the expectation from the employer to continue to go to the workplace, or for work to continue remotely but you cannot maintain full levels of productivity. Even though we disagree with the direction such as this, workers should be following directives from their employer to file sick leave, vacation, sick bank, overtime bank, personal days, and the like to stay home and not work if they are needing to.

    Direction to employees in this position:

    1. Collect all correspondence with employer.
    2. Mark every day why you are home and why the employer thinks you are at home (sick leave, vacation, personal days, etc.)
    3. Mark why you decided to stay home (childcare, self-isolation, sick, etc.). This will not be shared with employer, but the union will be collecting the information to file grievances and other complaints later.

    The goal is to get those days back from the employer.

    Employment Insurance

    Official Employment Insurance links

    The federal EI program has waived the one week waiting period and have set-up call lines to deal with the influx:

    •         Canada EI Notice on COVID-19
    •         EI Sickness benefit
    •         Make sure the local reviewed the CA and ensure the employer is following it.
    •         Be advised that there is already a delay receiving EI payments.
    •         The length of time will impact members depending on how long the wait is to receive the ROE and start receiving EI payments.

    Questions to ask Employers

    1.   How long will it take for ER to issue ROEs?
    2.   Has the employer announced a full closure or is this just a group?
    3.   Who will be providing this service if the employer is still open?
    4.   If this is an outsourced service, how will the central employer be continuing to provide this service? How?
    5.   Will laid-off employees be approached to provide in-house services?

    Additional resources

    CUPE Ontario University Workers Coordinating Committee

    Statement regarding Ryerson University’s termination of RSU Operating Agreement

    February 11, 2020

    CUPE Local 1281 strongly condemns the actions that Ryerson University has taken to sever all ties with the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU). This drastic measure starves the RSU of the fees that full time undergraduate students and all graduate students pay to their students’ union.This action also prevents these students from accessing advocacy services, important equity service centres like the Centre for Women and Trans People, Rye Pride, the Racialised Students Collective, Rye Access, Centre for Safer Sex and Sexual Violence Support, and the Good Food Room are all jeopardy. 

    Ryerson University, because of their extreme decision to terminate the operation agreement with the RSU, is attempting to force the dissolution of a decades old community stronghold that employs eight full time staff who are members of CUPE 1281. Employees of the RSU are the original chartered members of CUPE 1281 from 1974. Our members should be able to continue to do their jobs; it’s inappropriate for the university to intervene this way and to put their jobs at risk.

    We stand with Ryerson students who deserve an autonomous students’ union that’s free to critique and challenge the University administration. Currently, Ryerson University is trying to set up a new student “government” with appointed students to determine it’s organizational structure, while the RSU is running it’s annual general elections without access to it’s membership lists because the university will not release them. This is a problem.

    We call on Ryerson University to re-open communications with the RSU, to fairly negotiate an operational agreement, and release the levy fees to the RSU so that their important services and advocacy can continue to support Ryerson students and the community at large.

    For more information contact Lyndall Musselman, President of CUPE Local 1281 

    CUPE 1281 response to concerning CMG emails

    On Friday December 20, 2019, outgoing members of the Canadian Media Guild (CMG) executive board made a number of incendiary and unfounded allegations against our unionized CMG staff, CUPE 1281 and our CUPE National Staff Representatives.  Such needlessly inflammatory statements do nothing to bring the Parties closer to concluding a  Collective Agreement that’s been outstanding since 2016 nor to repair a relationship frayed by months of hard line concessionary bargaining that took aim at cornerstone entitlements such as severance on retirement and sick leave. 

    Unionized workers are entitled to mobilize for a fair deal. Union staffers are no exception. Our campaign, which focused on the personal experiences of our members was true, accurate and always respectful. We continue to stand by the campaign and our members at CMG as they continue to bargain for a fair deal in the New Year, with a new CMG management team. 

    For more information, please contact CMG 1281 CUPE Steward Deb Hong at

    CUPE 1281 is Fighting Back Against the Ford PSE Agenda


    “CUPE 1281 is Fighting Back Against the Ford PSE Agenda”


    For Immediate Release

    January 27th, 2019

    The Executive of CUPE Local 1281 joins the chorus of  post-secondary students and workers on post-secondary education campuses to condemn the attacks from the Ford Government announced on January 17th. University and college students in Ontario now face a precarious and defunded future pursuing their education.

    Meanwhile, our members, many of whom are employed by students’ unions or other student run organizations on university campuses, are forced to consider whether or not their workplaces will survive the new Ford Government mandate to make their student levies optional. CUPE Local 1281 sees this announcement as a blatant attack on students’ rights, important services for equity seeking student groups, and our members’ jobs. Moreover, this new directive by the Ford Government is but one part of a wider undermining of the social safety net of the Province, adding to already under attack areas ranging from social assistance to health care.

    Our Local will fight back and do all that we can to support students’ right to organize and ensure post-secondary education in Ontario is not pushed out of reach or made unsafe for marginalized students or those coming from low-income backgrounds.

    To our fellow organizers across the Province, we call for unity and diversity in action against the direct and consistent offensives of the Ford regime. Together, we will win.


    For more information, contact:
    Naila Lalji, CUPE Local 1281 President
    Tel: 416-551-0057


    CUPE 1281 Convention

    CUPE 1281 convention is around the corner: Monday June 4, 2018.

    If you’ve been thinking of getting more involved with your union, there are a number of opportunities that you can put your name forward for! Positions elected at convention will include:

    Read More

    CUPE Ontario Spring School 2018

    CUPE 1281 is sponsoring six (6) members’ attendance at CUPE Ontario Spring School, February 28-March 5, 2018 in Toronto.  Please click here for course listings and descriptions.  The Union is covering registration costs for 2-3 day courses priced at $100, and reimbursements in accordance with the Standing Policy on Reimbursement for Union Participation.  We urge members to use their leave provisions, workplace professional development funds (if any), CUPE council funds, and/or apply for CUPE scholarships if possible, to maximize access to funding.  CUPE 1281 members interested in participating in Spring School should submit a statement of interest to Sara Jaffri (admin@cupe1281.caby Friday, February 2, 2018.  Spring School generally fills up fast, so please do not delay in expressing your interest.

    We are also covering registration for members to attend a training session of their selection from the 2018 CUPE Workshop calendar here from January to May 2018.  The same parameters outlined above apply.  For those selecting a course from the calendar, please state your interest to at least three weeks prior to the course commencement so that you can be registered. We will also consider interest in courses offered by Local CUPE Council and labour council, OFL and CLC sponsored courses/educationals. If you are interested in attending a non-CUPE educational or have an idea for an alternative educational opportunity for your workplace please contact:

    In accordance with the Bylaws, members who have attended courses, conferences and educationals, please submit a brief report (250-500 words) outlining the materials covered or actions taken at the course, conference or educational workshop.  The report should also outline areas where the member would be able to share skills or materials with others in the Local. Such reports will be collected and held by the Vice-President.

    Please take a look at the information links, note the deadlines, and take advantage of these opportunities! 

    CUPE 1281 Statement on workplace closure at The Centre for Women & Trans People (York University)

    (November 23, 2017)

    This statement is to inform the York University community of the current situation at the Centre for Women and Trans People (CWTP-York), to dispel inaccurate information or misinformed perceptions which may negatively impact our members. As the union representing the Centre’s two staff, CUPE 1281’s main concern is to defend these workers from negative repercussions resulting from the Employer’s actions, including the Employer’s failure to defend workers from (and active complicity in) campaigns targeting trans staff.

    Read More