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"Irregular" / extended working hours

Milhouser911

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Good evening

I'm searching for a definition of what constitutes "Irregular Hours" with respect to the CFTDI - every time I try to submit a meal or mileage claim, I'm being told that the CFTDI does not apply because it's not "irregular hours".  This includes working split shifts, 13 hour days, etc.

I can find no definition of "regular hours" or "irregular hours" in any literature.  My gut feeling is that the "regular hours" for a unit should be laid out in base/unit standing orders, and that anything that differs from these would be considered "irregular", but my unit doesn't have BSO's or USO's. 

In short, my crew is RSS/IS for a reserve unit and working 0900-1600, and then returning to work for 1900-2200 hrs.  I have submitted a memo requesting either a meal claim (if we're expected to remain at work during the 1600-1900 hrs window) or a mileage claim for the second trip to work (if we are expected to return home for the meal, and then return to work).  I'm being told that because this split shift does not constitute "irregular hours" that the instructions in the CFTDI do not apply. 

It's very difficult to gauge the validity of this argument without a definition of "irregular hours", so if anyone is able to shine some light on this for me, it would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for your help,

Milhouse
 

mariomike

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Milhouser911 said:
In short, my crew is RSS/IS for a reserve unit and working 0900-1600, and then returning to work for 1900-2200 hrs. 

For reference to the discussion,

RegF Support Staff (RSS) - Reserve Trg hours [Merged]
https://army.ca/forums/threads/103077.0
4 pages.
 

Milhouser911

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Thanks for the referral.  I've read that discussion and it's helpful from a time accounting perspective, but it doesn't cover any CTFDI instructions in terms of meals or mileage.

Thanks,

Milhouse
 

mariomike

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You are welcome.  :)

Hopefully, the answer may help other RegF Support Staff (RSS).
 

ballz

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IAW CFAO 36-14, if you are forced to work over dinner, you are entitled to a meal.

IAW the CFTDTIs, 5.24, Recall to workplace, it seems to have nothing to do with "irregular hours" or not... you are only expected to come to work once per 24 hour period.

5.24 — RECALL TO WORKPLACE 5.24 — RAPPEL AU TRAVAIL
Subject to instruction 5.20 (General), a member
who is recalled from home to the member’s
workplace is — if the recall is the second trip to the
workplace in a 24 hour period — entitled to be
reimbursed:

(a) in respect of a member using a PMV, two
times the kilometric rate for the direct road
distance between the member’s home and the
workplace; and

(b) in respect of a member using local
transportation — including buses, subways,
commuter trains, taxis, bridge tolls, docking
fees, and other transportation charges —
authorized by the approving authority ordering
the recall, the member’s actual and reasonable
expenses including gratuities.


This is a common thing with RSS guys... I'm surprised no one has grieved it yet. They need to piss or get off the pot. Either you are dismissed at 1600 and being recalled to work, or you are getting a meal claim since you are working from 0800 - 2200. If they say neither, grieve it and site the two policies referenced.

 

Milhouser911

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Thanks for the info, that's exactly my opinion. I have asked about it in the past and been told 'no', so I decided to submit a memo requesting permission to claim one or the other, with exactly those references, so that I could get the denial in writing.

I was told 'if you submit this, you're going to lose credibility with the CoC, so I'm giving you a chance to withdraw this memo' by the adj.

Leadership at its finest.
 

ballz

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Milhouser911 said:
Thanks for the info, that's exactly my opinion. I have asked about it in the past and been told 'no', so I decided to submit a memo requesting permission to claim one or the other, with exactly those references, so that I could get the denial in writing.

I was told 'if you submit this, you're going to lose credibility with the CoC, so I'm giving you a chance to withdraw this memo' by the adj.

Leadership at its finest.

The Adjt should be considering how much credibility the CoC has if they're trying to make people do stuff without honouring the entitlements that go along with it.

If I were a CO and found out I was authorized to give more support to a member who I am asking a lot of of... I'd be happy about it.
 

Eye In The Sky

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If the CO of your unit doesn't publish normal working hours, how could they say you were AWOL if you were late?

I worked at a CBGHQ years ago;  we also worked the CL A parade day with a split shift (Thursday) from 0800-1500 and then 1900-2200 plus 1 x weekend a month (0800-1600) but *these were detailed in the the HQ ROs as our normal duty hours.  However, our ROs also stated that we were shiftworkers and as compensation had either Monday or Friday as a NWD (managed at the Branch Head level).  If we stayed and worked thru the 1500-1900 timeframe on Thursday it was "voluntary".  Going home was also a choice by the member.  There was a lunchroom and the ability to purchase a meal within the area of the place of duty.  From the CFTDI as it is today:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
2.02 — DEFINITIONS — CFTDTI

“approving authority” means:
(c) in respect of irregular work hours a superior officer – or an approving authority under subparagraphs (a) and (b).

3.01 — APPLICATION

(1) (Regular Force) Subject to CFTDTI 3.02 (No Application), the CFTDTI apply to a member of the Regular Force who is, after 31 January 2011:

(a) either:
(i) on TD;
(ii) on an attached posting; or
(iii) in respect of CFTDTI Chapter 5 (Travel Within Place of Duty) only, ordered by an approving authority to work — or to be immediately available for work during — irregular hours inside the member’s place of duty;

3.02 — NO APPLICATION

The CFTDTI does not apply to a member:
(a) of the Regular Force who is entitled to relocation benefits of any kind, except a benefit under CBI 208.997 (Separation Expense);
(b) of the Reserve Force serving on Class “A”, “B”, or “C” Reserve Service, who refuses relocation benefits of any kind — except a benefit under CBI 208.997 (Separation Expense) — when offered relocation benefits for that Reserve Service; or
(c) who is both in receipt of a benefit under CBI 208.997 (Separation Expense) and at their principal residence, as defined in that instruction.

CHAPTER 5 TRAVEL WITHIN PLACE OF DUTY

5.01 — APPLICATION
Subject to Chapter 3 (Application of CFTDTI), this Chapter applies to a member who is:
b) ordered by an approving authority to work — or to be immediately available for work — during irregular hours inside the member’s place of duty.

5.18 — MEALS

(1) (Entitlement And Amount) Subject to paragraph (2), a member is entitled to be reimbursed for actual and reasonable meal expenses if all of the following conditions are satisfied:

(a) the member’s duty:
(i) prevents the member from having their normal meal; or
(ii) compels the member to have a meal at public expense;

(b) an approving authority considers it reasonable in the circumstances for the member to have a meal — other than a mess dinner, mixed dining-in, or other similar event — at public expense; and

(c) the member pays for a meal.

(2) (Interpretation) For greater certainty, the following examples of payable meal expenses shall be referred to when interpreting the entitlement under paragraph (1):
(a) an approving authority orders a member to work through a normal meal hour and the member is thereby required to spend more for the meal than would otherwise be the case;
(c) an approving authority orders a member to attend, a full-day conference — or seminar, training session, meeting, or public hearing —and:
(ii) there is no available meal facility (i.e. lunch room) for the member to eat a meal brought from home;

5.19 — MEALS — ADMINISTRATION

(1) (Application) This instruction applies to instruction 5.18 (Meals).

(2) (Meal Breaks) Every superior officer shall — unless it is exceptionally unreasonable to do so — provide a meal break to a member approximately midway through a regular work period or shift for the member to obtain a meal at the member’s expense.

(3) (Meals — Delay) A reasonably delayed meal hour does not by itself create an entitlement to a meal at Crown expense.

SECTION 3 — TRANSPORTATION BENEFITS

5.20 — GENERAL

(1) (No Entitlement) There is no entitlement for a member to be reimbursed any expenses for travel:

a) to and from their permanent workplace on a daily basis;
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In the case you're in, unless you're not given the break at suppertime, I don't think the CFTDI allows for a meal claim and if you didn't get your break, the amount would be for 'actual and reasonable' expenses (whatever amount your receipt was for).

* maybe my read on the piece Ballz posted is wrong, but if the unit had these split-shift posted as Normal Working Duty Hours, you wouldn't technically be 'recalled' to work, much like folks who go home for lunch if they live close enough at my Sqn.  When would 'recall/irregular hours* apply?  Example I think of, you are the Duty NCO and get called in because an alarm is going off and you have to give access to the MPs. 

I might not interpreting it correctly though.

Unrelated question;  with your split-shift day (once a week I assume), are you compensated for it with NWDs?  I know RSS used to get run into the ground sometimes as well without getting the compensation the current Leave Policy Manual directs.
 

Pusser

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This is not a CFTDI issue, nor is it recall from leave.  However, CFAO 36-14 (as long and convoluted as it is) does provide entitlement to a meal public expense in this case.  Essentially, anyone working an extended day beyond the "normal" supper hour (usually defined by meal hours in the messes) is entitled to eat on the Queen's dime.  This meal should normally be provided from CAF sources (i.e. mess, hay box, box lunch); however, if this is not practical, reimbursement for actual and reasonable costs is authorized.  This  means the members need receipts and they only receive what they actually paid for the meal, up to the maximum claimable (i.e. TD meal rates) for the meal in question.
 

Milhouser911

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EITS:

This is the reason I'm looking for a definition of "irregular hours".  Story time:

I once submitted a TD claim for doing Base Duty in Wainwright.  According to the base orders, the duty cpl is ordered to stay in shacks for the night.  According to CFTDI 5.02, (2):

(2) (Entitlement and Amount) Subject to paragraphs (1) and (3), a member is entitled to be reimbursed for actual and reasonable expenses for accommodations if an approving authority orders the member into quarters or commercial accommodations.

and CFTDI 5.16:

5.16 — INCIDENTAL EXPENSE ALLOWANCE
A member — who is entitled under instruction 5.02 (Accommodation) — is entitled to an incidental expense allowance at the rate set out in the NJC Travel Directive for the location where the member was at the start of a day.


I submitted a TD claim based on these paras - it's black and white.  I'm ordered into shacks, I'm entitled to TD. 

This request was denied, on the basis of 5.01:

Subject to Chapter 3 (Application of CFTDTI), this Chapter applies to a member who is:

b) ordered by an approving authority to work — or to be immediately available for work — during irregular hours inside the member’s place of duty


The CoC decided in its wisdom that working 0730 - 0830 (kitchen), reporting to your regular job, working 1130-1300 (kitchen), reporting to your regular job, working 1630-1830 (kitchen), and then sitting at the jr ranks from 1700-2300 or later, and then back to the kitchen for 0545, did not constitute "irregular hours" and thus eliminated any entitlement under the rest of the CFTDI.  They found some obscure "clarification" from Ottawa that flat out said "Base duty is not considered irregular hours, because they're the hours you've been ordered to work".  I wish I could find it, it's a flat-out denial of reality.

This case now, I'm using 5.18

5.18 — MEALS
(1) (Entitlement And Amount) Subject to paragraph (2), a member is entitled to be reimbursed for actual and reasonable meal expenses if all of the following conditions are satisfied:
      (a) the member’s duty:
                  (i) prevents the member from having their normal meal; or
                  (ii) compels the member to have a meal at public expense;
      (b) an approving authority considers it reasonable in the circumstances for the member to have a meal — other than a mess dinner,
        mixed dining-in, or other similar event — at public expense; and
      (c) the member pays for a meal.
 


OR 5.24, which states

5.24 — RECALL TO WORKPLACE
Subject to instruction 5.20 (General), a member who is recalled from home to the member’s workplace is — if the recall is the second trip to the workplace in a 24 hour period — entitled to be reimbursed:
        (a) in respect of a member using a PMV, two times the kilometric rate for the direct road distance between the member’s home and
          the workplace; and


The submitted memo requested guidance on which one to claim - either I'm returning home for my supper and driving back to work, in which case I'm being recalled and am entitled to mileage, or I'm expected to stay at work during the intervening hours and am entitled to a meal claim, as I'm being prevented from eating my regular meal.

However, both of these references fall under the umbrella of the original 5.01, so all the CoC has to say is "These aren't irregular hours" and I've got no angle from which to argue.  The fact that there exists no definition of "irregular hours" means that I have absolutely no way to counter.  I expect this to be rejected, and i will grieve the decision, but if no definition has been needed to date, and the CFTDI hasn't been updated since 2012, I don't expect a speedy resolution.

Now that I've laid out my entire case, I'm open to suggestions, advice, or info on how other units handle this - it appears to me that the entitlement is laid out clearly in black and white, but allows the CoC the weasel words to get out of it if they don't feel like paying.

Thanks for all the help,

Milhouse
 

Milhouser911

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And here is the response from the chain:

"CFTDI policy, as cited by mbr, does not apply for the following reasons:
a.  Mbr is not on TD nor are they working at a temporary location
b.  Mbr is not being recalled to work on wed evenings.  Per standing unit policy, wed duty day for full time staff is 0900-2200hrs MST.  Mbrs are afforded a proper break from 1600-1830 hrs MST.  Mbrs may remain at the workplace and utilize facilities (ie canteen), or mbrs may leave the workplace if they so choose. 
C.  Mbr is not being prevented from having an evening meal, they are not being ordered to work over the supper meal hour. 

As such, I do not support."

Breakdown:  A is irrelevant.  Mbr doesn't need to be on TD or working at a temporary location.
B.  The meat of the subject.  I think it fits the definition of "recalled to work", as Ballz said, you are only expected to commute to work once each day. 
C.  Memo didn't say that we were being prevented from having an evening meal, we are being prevented from having our NORMAL meal, as per 5.18 1 (a).

Grievance inbound.
 

Gunner98

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As Pusser stated below CFAO 36-14 para aa applies and not CFTDI:

RATIONS PROVIDED WITHOUT CHARGE
4.    The commanding officer (CO) of a base, unit or ship providing food
services is authorized to draw rations for and provide meals without charge
to:

aa.  on the authority of a supervisor not below the rank of sergeant,
          a member living-out or residing in MQs who is not subject to
          deductions for rations who, as a result of being ordered to work
          beyond his normal working hours (as established by the working
          routine for his unit, base or ship), is required to work over a
          meal period or for at least four continuous hours between the
          hours of 1900 and 0700;


CBIs:
210.83 - Meal Expense – Reserve Force on Class A Reserve Service or Class B Reserve Service

210.83(1) (Meal expense) An officer or non-commissioned member of the Reserve Force on Class A or B Reserve Service who is entitled to rations under QR&O 36.35 (Entitlement to Rations), over a meal hour shall, if a meal cannot be provided from Government sources, be paid either:
a.a meal expense without receipt equivalent to the national average cost of a dispersed lunch meal produced by a Canadian Forces dining facility for visiting units and personnel as determined annually by the Chief of the Defence Staff, or
b.a meal expense supported by a receipt not to exceed the meal allowance rate for a lunch established by the Treasury Board for the public service.

210.83(2) (Payment of expense) The expense described in paragraph (1) is payable in the manner established by the Chief of the Defence Staff.

(effective 13 June 2002

QR&O - para h below applies

36.35 - ENTITLEMENT TO RATIONS

(1) Except as prescribed in paragraph (2), the commanding officer of a base, unit or element is entitled to draw a daily ration to the approved scale for:
a.each officer or non-commissioned member on the strength of the base, unit or element who i.is subject to deductions from pay and allowances as prescribed in paragraph (1) of article 208.505 (Deductions for Provision of Rations), or
ii.is not subject to deductions from pay and allowances under paragraph (2) of article 208.505;

b.each member of the Canadian Forces on temporary duty or attached duty at the base, unit or element for the period of that duty;
c.each patient in a hospital of the base, unit or element;
d.each cadet, to whom the Queens Regulations and Orders for the Canadian Cadet Organizations apply when attending a summer camp at the base, unit or element or on other occasions prescribed by the Minister;
e.each civilian employee of the Department on the strength of a base, unit or element whose terms of engagement provide entitlement to prepared rations without financial recovery;
f.each person authorized to be provided with prepared rations on financial recovery;
g.each person held in custody in the unit detention room for whom a daily ration is not otherwise drawn; (1 September 1999)
h.each person engaged in operations, required for duty during a continuous state of readiness or taking part in a training, field or operational exercise authorized by the officer commanding the command, during which it is not feasible or desirable to return to mess halls or to other normal places of messing; and
i.any other person designated by the Chief of the Defence Staff.




 

dapaterson

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If your regularly scheduled hours are changed, you are working irregular hours.  If you are working your regularly scheduled hours, you are not working irregular hours.  You are, rather, working your normal hours - so CFAO 36-14 would not apply.

If you know in advance the hours you are able to prepare - prepare food in advance and store it in the canteen.  CFTDI etc only apply when it's unplanned and you're unable to prepare in advance.
 

Milhouser911

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Simian:

I don't believe that applies.  We are technically not on duty from 1600-1830.  As we're allowed to go home for the meal, and we're not working "4 hours between 1900-0700", the CFAO would not appear to take precedence here.

In addition, if the unit schedule states at every Wednesday we work these hours, it's hard to argue that they're "beyond normal working hours". 

So I maintain that this is a CFTDI issue, rather than a CFAO issue.

dapaterson:  Can you clarify your position for me?  If my CoC decides that I am to work 0000-1900hrs every day for two weeks, those shifts would not be considered "irregular hours"?  This is a true example of a shift I worked during the early maple resolve exercises, and meals were provided at the kitchen.  Are you saying that these meals were provided out of the goodness of the CO's heart, and not because an entitlement existed?  We had plenty of time to walk to the kitchen, eat, and walk back to work, so if we had been inclined we could have brought a breakfast, lunch, and supper, and eaten in the canteen, or gone out for takeout.  By this standard, no entitlement existed.

Thanks,

Milhouse
 

Eye In The Sky

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Pusser said:
This is not a CFTDI issue, nor is it recall from leave.

Can you elaborate why Section 3.01 doesn't apply? 

3.01 — APPLICATION

(1) (Regular Force) Subject to CFTDTI 3.02 (No Application), the CFTDTI apply to a member of the Regular Force who
is, after 31 January 2011:

(a) either:
(i) on TD;(ii) on an attached posting; or
(iii) in respect of CFTDTI Chapter 5 (Travel Within Place of Duty) only, ordered by an approving authority to work — or to be immediately available for work during — irregular hours inside the member’s place of duty;

This seems to cover situations like I used for an example;  you are the Duty NCO and get called in to give MPs access for an alarm or something outside of normal working/duty hours.  You are being called in for duty reasons, and would not have incurred those travel and/or (possible) meal expenses except because of the reasons of your duty.

I see 2 issues.

1.  the unit not posting normal duty hours; and
2.  there being no definition of 'irregular hours', leaving the definition of it subjective to each/any approving authority.
 

211RadOp

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If I am reading this correctly:

1. You were the scheduled Base Duty Cpl;
2. You were provided a room on base for the night as you had to "live-in" during the duty; and
3. Presumably you were provided a ration card for you time on duty.

I don't see what you are trying to claim.  You did not have to travel back and forth to base and were provide meals.  In my little pea brain, you are not entitled to anything.

If you were not "living-in" and were not entitled to rations during your duty, and you were called back due to an issue and you lost meal time for that, then yes I could see why you would be entitled to claim travel and a meal (with receipt).
 

SupersonicMax

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Having done a lot of duty where I had to sleep on base, we were always given the per diem and fed by the mess hall.
 

dapaterson

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Milhouser911 said:
dapaterson:  Can you clarify your position for me?  If my CoC decides that I am to work 0000-1900hrs every day for two weeks, those shifts would not be considered "irregular hours"?  This is a true example of a shift I worked during the early maple resolve exercises, and meals were provided at the kitchen.  Are you saying that these meals were provided out of the goodness of the CO's heart, and not because an entitlement existed?  We had plenty of time to walk to the kitchen, eat, and walk back to work, so if we had been inclined we could have brought a breakfast, lunch, and supper, and eaten in the canteen, or gone out for takeout.  By this standard, no entitlement existed.

Thanks,

Milhouse

For a limited window, changing the regular battle rhythm, while on an exercise?  That would be "irregular", and providing meals at crown expense would be more than reasonable.

In the case of working a 14 hour day, with 2 1/2 hours off in the afternoon, you aren't being recalled (that's when you're not expected to come in but have to anyways), nor are you working hours outside the regular.
 

ballz

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dapaterson said:
For a limited window, changing the regular battle rhythm, while on an exercise?  That would be "irregular", and providing meals at crown expense would be more than reasonable.

In the case of working a 14 hour day, with 2 1/2 hours off in the afternoon, you aren't being recalled (that's when you're not expected to come in but have to anyways), nor are you working hours outside the regular.

Then he is entitled to a meal under CFAO 36-14. Despite the unit’s failure to put something so basic in their routine orders, it doesn’t require much common sense to see that he’s working beyond his normal working hours on Tuesdays when he’s told to work until 2200.

The argument you’re making about it having anything to do with “knowing beforehand” and “having enough time to prepare a meal” is completely false and not stated anywhere. A good example is if you work M-F, 0800 – 1600, and you’re ordered to attend a training activity on base over a Saturday/Sunday from 0800 - 1600. You might know about it 4 weeks beforehand, you’re at your normal place of work with dining facility, etc, fully capable of preparing lunch…. doesn’t matter, you’re entitled to lunch that day at public expense because Saturday and Sunday are not part of your normal working hours.

The arguments being made here seem to be that the CO can make someone to work every day from 0100 – 0400, 0700 – 1100, 1300 – 1600, 1900 – 2100, and it’s perfectly okay and the member is not entitled to anything because it’s the normal pattern of work/breaks for that individuals duties, he knew beforehand, and there’s a microwave in the building.
 
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