Welcome to the fourth issue of the new ETFO Employee Life and Health Trust (ELHT) Benefits eNewsletter. The purpose of the newsletter is to ensure that ETFO Members are informed on a regular basis about the new ETFO ELHT and the ETFO Benefits Plan.
Who will be eligible to participate in the ETFO Benefits Plan under the ETFO ELHT?
- ETFO Teachers, ESPs, PSPs, and DECEs in permanent positions;
- Long Term Occasional Teachers holding a position of 90 consecutive calendar days or longer;
- Retirees that enrolled in board-owned retiree plans prior to August 31, 2013 and still hold those benefits on the date thattheir local transitions into the new ETFO ELHT will be able to participate based on prior arrangements with the board;
- Retirees that enrolled in board-owned retiree plans after August 31, 2013 and still hold those benefits on the date thattheir local transitions into the new ETFO ELHT will be able to participate based on 100% retiree paid premiums in a segregated experience pool.Are Daily Occasional Teachers eligible to participate in the ETFO Benefits Plan under the ETFO ELHT?No. Daily Occasional Teachers who currently receive payment in-lieu of benefits coverage from their boards will continue to receive this as those boards have an on-going obligation under the terms of the central agreement. Where benefits coverage was previously provided by boards for Daily Occasional Teachers this arrangement will also remain the on-going obligation of those affected boards under the terms of the central agreement. Those boards will find a similar plan for Occasional Teachers. However, Daily Occasional Teachers are not eligible to participate in the new ETFO Benefits Plan.
Local Transitions into the ETFO ELHT
Locals will be transitioned into the ETFO ELHT on a staggered basis over the 2016-2017 school year. In accordance with the central agreements, all locals will be transitioned into the Trust no later than August 31, 2017 and will then become covered by the new ETFO Benefits Plan. Until your local transitions into the ETFO ELHT, your benefits will continue to be provided in accordance with your existing collective agreements. As a result, there should be no change to your local benefits plan until the date that your local is transitioned into the ETFO ELHT plan.
All qualifying Long Term Occasional Teachers will be eligible (i.e. LTO of 90 consecutive calendar days to qualify) for benefits under the Trust. Where a board currently provides payment in-lieu of benefits for teachers in Long Term Occasional assignments, the payment-in-lieu shall cease upon the transition of that local into the ETFO plan.
As was announced in April 2016, the first wave of local transitions into the ETFO ELHT is scheduled for November 1, 2016. Presidents and eligible members in the first wave will be contacted with additional information leading up to their transition in the fall of 2016. Once the locals and eligible members are transitioned into the ETFO ELHT structure, the new ETFO Benefits Plan will apply.
The second wave of local transitions into the ETFO ELHT is scheduled for February 1, 2017. The locals participating in the February transition will be determined in July 2016 and will be communicated with local presidents and members when it is finalized. There will be at least two additional waves of transition during the 2016-2017 school year, anticipated to occur in April and June 2017. Local presidents and members will be informed as each wave is determined and at least several months prior to the transition of their local transition taking place.
When will I know more details about the new benefits plan, including information about the plan design and which services and products will be covered?
Specific plan details and enrolment information including premium rates will be shared with all members in the fall prior to the first local plans being transitioned into the ETFO Benefits Plan.
How else will I be able to access information about the ETFO Benefits Plan?
A new Benefits section of the ETFO website http://www.etfo.ca/benefits/Pages/default.aspx is now live. This section includes past issues of the ETFO Benefits eNewsletter and in future will highlight FAQs, contact information, and more. Members will also receive communication through several vehicles including the ETFO Benefits eNewsletter and direct mail and/or email from OTIP.
Is there someone that I can contact over the summer if I have questions about the plan?
Over the summer months, members with general benefits questions should contact ETFO Staff, Suzanne Gill at firstname.lastname@example.org.