2011 has been one heck of a year. First and foremost I want to thank our Union Activists for all they have done to make this Union successful. Our Union Activists include your Unit Chairpersons, Grievance and Safety Chairpersons, Job Evaluation, Shop Stewards, Safety Reps, Executive Members and last but not least, you.
While it’s important to have trained, competent people filling our key positions, it’s equally important to have an active membership, a membership that utilizes their greatest strength, the right to speak up when their contract is being violated. Thank you to all of you who have reported your issues to the Union.
We’ve successfully negotiated new Collective Agreements at KSCU, Sandman Hotel and are resuming KIS negotiations in January. On a day to day basis, we assist our members through numerous contract violations including, overtime pay and on-call pay issues, job posting, seniority calculations, erroneous benefit payments, LTD and Return to Work issues, WCB and EI appeals, counseling referrals, matters of discipline, and harassment. The majority of these issues are brought to us by the membership and I’m happy to report the vast majority of the issues brought to our attention have been resolved in the favour of our members.
2012 promises to be a very busy year with the Teck contract expiring on May 31, 2012. After the Christmas break, your Teck Bargaining Committee will be sending out priority questionnaires to each of our members, finalizing bargaining proposals and meeting with Local 480 to finalize our Bargaining strategy. Before getting to the Table with Teck, we will hold a membership meeting to ratify our proposals with you.
Let’s not forget about Union elections in April for all positions on the Executive and within each Bargaining Unit. Just as our workplaces are transitioning from the old work force to the new work force, so too is our Union. If you are interested in pursuing a role in the Union, now is the time to consider what role best suits you. Over the next three years, there is a lot of training to be done to ensure our Union remains strong and viable.
Thank you once again for making 2011 a successful year for our Union. Merry Christmas to each of you and Best Wishes for a successful New Year.
There are no problems we cannot solve together, and very few that we can solve by ourselves
Lyndon B Johnson