Mental Health First Aid Basic Certification

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Two opportunities for members to attend Mental Health First Aid Basic certification courses have been tentatively booked by System Staff Development to run on March 11 -12, 2019 and March 13 -14, 2019 at the TVDSB Education Centre in London.

Course Description: MHFA Basic is intended for adults interacting with adults (18 years and older). This course focuses on the four most common mental health disorders including substance related, mood related, anxiety and trauma related, and psychotic disorders. Participants who take this course are well prepared to interact confidently about mental health with their family, friends, communities, and workplaces. More information: https://www.mhfa.ca/en/course-type/basic

Registration will commence through the Employee portal on January 30, 2019 at 10 am for those interested in participating

Long Term Disability Trust Update

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Brothers and Sisters:

There have been many developments with our benefits over the past year. As of March 1, 2018,
our Life, Health and Dental benefits moved from individual school board plans into the CUPE
Education Workers Benefit Trust (CUPE EWBT). As with any major transition, there have been
some challenges, but our general feedback has been positive.

Our Long-term Disability (LTD) plan, for which you pay 100% of the premiums, are in a trust
fund, managed by a Board of Trustees made up of CUPE Local 4222 and Local 7575 members.
Last year – for the first time in 11 years – the plan required a rate increase. Our carrier (GreatWest Life) initially proposed a 42% increase, but we negotiated it down to a 15% increase to
1.93% of salary.

We were able to negotiate a lower rate increase based on ongoing benefits change in the
education sector, and with the promise that we would continue to monitor claims levels.
However, the number of LTD claims in our plan continues to rise:

Date Open LTD claims Disabled Life Reserves
End of November 2017 29 $3,157,719
End of December 2018 50 $4,372,142
This represents a 72 % increase in open LTD claims, and a 39% increase in reserves.

We have entered into negotiations on next year’s premiums with Great-West Life and have
asked them to report back on this large increase, so we can learn what is driving it. Factors that
usually impact LTD claims include working conditions, age and work stress, but we need to
know more about what is impacting our claims specifically.

More broadly, LTD rates are rising across the province. That’s why CUPE Ontario has been
working with other non-teacher groups in the education sector to investigate potential provincewide LTD solutions to the LTD challenge.

The good news is, we have a comprehensive LTD plan that is helping our members who are
most in need. The challenge is that continued increases in claims could lead to higher LTD rates
going forward.

We will keep you informed as negotiations continue and will report back to the membership with
our options.

Yours in solidarity,

Joanne Dowswell
Chair CUPE Local 4222 and Local 7575 LTD Trust

OTIP: February is heart health month!

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Keep your heart beating strong

February is heart health month, making it the perfect time to learn more about heart disease and how you can help prevent it by living a healthier life.
What is heart disease?
 
Heart disease is a buildup of plaque in the heart’s arteries that can lead to a heart attack, heart failure or death.Approximately 1 out of 12 (or 2.4 million) Canadians live with heart disease. However, as of 2013, the rate of Canadians diagnosed with heart disease began decreasing.

 

To learn more, visit: www.otipinsurance.com/article33

OTIP: 6 Winter Activities for the outdoor enthusiast

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6 Winter Activities for the Outdoor Enthusiast

One of the many things that makes Canada such a great place to live is its array of beautiful natural landscapes and the outdoor activities that they offer. Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy them. In fact, there are many outdoor activities that are still possible (if not better!) in the winter months. Since Canadian winters can seem to drag on forever, there’s really only one thing left to do: bundle up and embrace the great outdoors.

To learn more, visit: www.otipinsurance.com/article34