Unit 1 Dental Update: 2015-16 coverage and eligibility

Brad WalchukGeneral

Please note that we are in the process of updating our Unit 1 dental forms for the 2015-16.  The reason for the delay is that the Employer informed us in July that they planned to take 100% of the dental premiums (12 months worth of premiums) off of the first paycheque in September.  At our July General Membership Meeting, the members in attendance unanimously said “no!” to this costly proposal.  Previously, 12 months of premiums were collected over the duration of one’s employment (8 bi-weekly installments for those working in only one term, or 16 bi-weekly installments for those working fall and winter).

Allowing 12 months of deductions to be taken off in full on a single pay period would be financially crippling to many of members, especially in light of recent changes to scholarship payments which paid them out in full in May 2015, which have meant that many of our members have been without income over the past three months. This would have meant that over $144 would have been deducted off the first pay period, a time when grad student employees are also paying supplemental fees, textbooks, and a large chunk of tuition.

Since late July, we have been negotiating a more equitable and affordable means of collecting the premiums.  This has resulted in an inability to publish any updated forms for the 2015-16 academic year.  In the meantime, should you need to enroll in family coverage or opt-out of the plan, please use the forms from 2014-15, which are available in the Unit 1 Benefits section of our website.  Please note that the rates have increased to $12.43/mth for single coverage and $77.19/mth for family coverage.  The duration in which those premiums are to be deducted is still in the process of being negotiated, but we have firmly refused to have them deducted in full on the first pay period as the Employer originally proposed.