One Pay Benefit Holiday!

If you currently have benefits with Great West Life, you may have noticed that tomorrow’s pay was a little more then normal, and that is because there were no benefit deductions on this pay. This has nothing to do with the rollover to the new upcoming Provincial Benefit Trust, this was a “benefit holiday” from your local.

Prior to the Local being the Policy Holder to the current benefit plan with Great West Life, our benefits were part of a different benefit trust and as a result of that trust dissolving, there were monies left over, that were eventually given back to the locals to be disbursed amongst the members that were currently paying for benefits. The first reimbursement happened in 2014. A second payment was received from the trust in name of the local to again use towards benefits, so with that, I approached some of the Local Executive with the idea to provide a benefit holiday. It was decided to make it effective on the last pay in May, as the new Benefit Trust is expected to rollover June 1st, 2018. I was hoping for the month of May but unfortunately, with the cost of benefits, the funds we had were only enough to cover one pay of benefit deductions.

10 Month Employees
You may have also noticed, a reduction in deductions, resulting in a slightly higher pay, since March 23, 2018. 10 month employees pay a portion of benefits for July and August throughout the year, from Sept until June. Prior to March 23, 2018, you would have been deducted 14% more of the bi-weekly amount to cover the cost of benefits over the summer. The monies that have been deducted from August or September 2017 until the March 23, 2018 pay will eventually be refunded through the employer once the new Benefit plan is in place. Once I have the date that employees will receive the reimbursement I will send out a quick notice.

I have asked for a Benefit Trust update, as it is past May 16th, and we have not received the packages or member portal information for the new Benefit Plan. I have asked for OCEW to send out an update. Once I have received the update, I will send out a local update as well.  

If you have any questions please email or call the office at

Hopefully this helps everyone enjoy a safe and relaxing May Long Weekend!
Kelly Martin