Workforce Relations

2022/2023 Voluntary Reduced Workweek (VRW) Program

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How do I apply for VRW days?
  2. Can I take VRW days and vacation days consecutively to extend my vacation?
  3. During which period can I request to have VRW days?
  4. How will VRW days affect my Pension? Group insurance? Vacation accumulation? Sick time accumulation?
  5. How are VRW deductions calculated?
  6. How will my pay be affected?
  7. How will VRW days affect my Record of Employment (ROE) as they are considered to be Leave without Pay?
  8. If I participate in the VRW program and apply for Employment Insurance, will the amount of benefits be affected by my VRW days?
  9. What if the VRW days that I have requested are not the days my Department prefers?
  10. How does the Department decide which VRW days are approved?
  11. Can I apply for VRW days after March 18, 2022?
  12. Can I cancel my approved VRW days?
  13. Can an employee take VRW days and then get paid overtime later on to catch up on essential work?
  14. What happens if I incur a reduction in salary?
  15. Who do I need to notify if I chose to cancel participation in the current year's program as a result of a reduction in salary and what happens to my deduction?
  16. If I chose not to cancel my participation in the program as a result of a reduction in salary, what happens to my deduction?
  17. What happens if I leave my job with the Manitoba Government?
  18. Who should I contact for further information?

1. How do I apply for VRW days?

Application forms are available from Department Management, Human Resources and on the Manitoba Government intranet. Completed forms must be submitted to the Department Manager/Director by March 18, 2022.

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2. Can I take VRW days and vacation days consecutively to extend my vacation?

The Department Manager/Director will consider all requests subject to operational requirements.

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3. During which period can I request to have VRW days?

The program allows employees to request VRW days off up to March 10, 2023.

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4. How will VRW days affect my Pension? Group insurance? Vacation accumulation? Sick time accumulation?

Approved VRW days will not have an effect on your pension, group life insurance, vacation accumulation, or sick leave accumulation.

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5. How are VRW deductions calculated?

The deduction is calculated using the number of days that you have as approved VRW days and your rate of pay as at April 1, 2022. Should a general pay increase (GPI) be implemented during this fiscal year, the VRW reduction in pay will be adjusted to reflect your new rate of pay.

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6. How will my pay be affected?

Employees will continue to receive regular salary for the date of the leave of absence and the reduction in pay will be spread out over 24 pay periods.

The Approximate Net Pay Reduction Chart 2022 chart provides an idea of the approximate decrease in net pay that an employee may experience for each of the 24 bi-weekly pay periods between May 6, 2022, and March 24, 2023.

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7. How will VRW days affect my Record of Employment (ROE) as they are considered to be Leave without Pay?

For the purpose of producing a Record of Employment, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) requires that hours be reported as actual hours worked in the bi-weekly pay period and earnings be reported as earnings associated with the hours actually worked in the bi-weekly pay period.

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8. If I participate in the VRW program and apply for Employment Insurance, will the amount of benefits be affected by my VRW days?

If you have taken VRW days during the qualifying period of Employment Insurance, your benefits may be affected as the approved VRW days used may not be included as hours worked.

Should you have specific questions about eligibility and the calculation of Employment Insurance, please contact your local ESDC office.

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9. What if the VRW days that I have requested are not the days my Department prefers?

VRW days will be approved only if they are acceptable to both you and your Department.

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10. How does the Department decide which VRW days are approved?

Your Department Manager/Director will balance the requests for VRW days with the operational requirements of the Department. Operational requirements may include the vacation schedule and the workload of all staff within your work area.

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11. Can I apply for VRW days after March 19, 2021?

Applications received after this date can be considered by department management subject to scheduling and operational requirements at the time of the request.

The exception to this is Article 5:06 VRW Guidelines, if you notify the Employer of your intent to cancel your participation in the current year's program, as a result of a reduction in salary, you will not be eligible to reapply for VRW days, in the current program year.  Also please refer to questions 14, 15 and 16 within the FAQ's.

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12. Can I cancel my approved VRW days?

You may, with the approval from your Department, change the dates of the approved VRW day(s). However, you cannot change the number of VRW days that are approved.

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13. Can an employee take VRW days and then get paid overtime later on to catch up on essential work?

Requests for VRW days off will not be approved if overtime would result.

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14. What happens if I incur a reduction in salary?

You may cancel your participation in the current year's program within two (2) weeks of incurring the reduction. However, all your remaining VRW days will be cancelled and you will not be eligible to reapply for VRW days, in the current program year. Also please refer to Article 5:06 VRW Guidelines and questions 11, 15 and 16 within the FAQ's.

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15. Who do I need to notify if I chose to cancel participation in the current year's program as a result of a reduction in salary and what happens to my deduction?

You must submit your request in writing to your employing authority and pay and benefits within two (2) weeks of incurring the reduction. Any VRW related overpayment or underpayment will be adjusted and any previously approved VRW days will be cancelled. Also please refer to Article 5:06 VRW Guidelines and questions 11, 14 and 16 within the FAQ's.

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16. If I chose not to cancel my participation in the program as a result of a reduction in salary, what happens to my deduction?

You must continue to participate in the VRW program with your existing rate of deduction and VRW days as approved. Also please refer to Article 5:06 VRW Guidelines and questions 11, 14 and 15 within the FAQ's.

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17. What happens if I leave my job with the Manitoba Government?

Any VRWW related overpayment or underpayment will be adjusted.

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18. Who should I contact for further information?

Contact your Manager/Director.

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