Division 660 Meetings
The next Division 660 meeting will be held on May 28th at 10:00.

This meeting is for TCRC Division 660 Bombardier employees of all classifications.

The meeting will be held at Long Branch legion 3850 Lakeshore blvd West.

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State of the union...
September 25th 2009 | Printer friendly

Brothers and Sisters of TCRC Division 660
It has been just a short time since February 20, 2009 when 89% of you voted to join the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC). Three months later 89% of you voted again to form your own General Committee of Adjustment (GCA). Your strong support has allowed us to lay the foundation that is necessary for Division 660 to build a powerful labour organization fully able to protect and serve all of our members.

Achievements
I want to acknowledge how far we have come so that you can see for yourself what can be achieved when we stand strong together. We had a good plan and we have achieved all of our objectives. In 7 short months we have:

  • Exercised our democratic rights, not once but twice. We not only chose a different union, but chose a course within that union that gives us the autonomy and freedom to chart our own course.
     
  • Established an executive committee for Division 660.
     
  • Requested and received financial support from TCRC for start-up.
     
  • As a GCA we have defined a new relationship with Bombardier by consistently enforcing the weak collective agreement we inherited from the ATU.
     
  • We are now members of the Canadian Railway Office of Arbitration and Dispute Resolution (CROA&DS). In an industry where it is easy to be fired for mistakes, we need access to a dispute resolution board familiar with railway operations to protect our members from unjustified firings. CROA gives us the ability to access an informed and just process.
     
  • We have made amendments to the grievance process to take the time each and every case deserves for a thorough investigation.
     
  • As a result of these changes, we have already been successful in getting a number of reversals and concessions on Bombardier decisions.

NEXT STEPS: Contract Negotiations
We are starting into contract negotiations. Ninety days prior to end of the year, we must submit a Notice to Bargain to Bombardier. The deadline to do that is Oct 3. We will submit our notice to bargain next week and arrange a time to begin the negotiations. Heading up the negotiation team is TCRC Vice President Doug Finnson. Doug is a seasoned negotiator and it will be invaluable having his expertise at the table. We greatly appreciate the support of VP Finnson and the TCRC national office throughout this process.

YOU HAVE AN IMPORTANT ROLE
Your involvement matters and every member plays a role in our success by staying informed and in touch. Make your union meeting a priority. Union meetings are where the business is done, 2 hours each month.

As we move into negotiations, have faith in your leadership. Ask questions so that you can understand the issues. There will be differences of opinion; this is a natural and important part of the process. Our ability to stand together is what makes us strong and how well we support each other is critical. Our goal is to achieve a collective agreement that is able to protect all of our members in both the short and long term. You and your family’s economic future depend on the outcome of these negotiations – be an active part of the process.

A divisional website will be launched very soon so that it is easier for you to have a more interactive relationship with your union on an ongoing basis.

CHALLENGES TO COME: The bigger picture
Running over CN lines and the GO-Bombardier relationship makes it a formidable task for our labour organization to develop the necessary working relationship with Bombardier. We are constrained because our only relationship is currently with Bombardier, even though CN and GO continue to have the ability to override Bombardier operational decision-making. This is the bigger picture that impacts our working life every day. As we move into negotiations, be assured that we are also thinking about how we can require a higher level of transparency and accountability from everyone involved in the GO rail system. This is a critical step if we understand that the shared ambition of labour, management and government is to create a thriving and viable world-class transportation system. Stay tuned.

Finally, I want to thank each and every member for your support. We inherited an empty collective agreement and a highly ineffective union in the ATU. Your individual support has made it possible for us to overcome all of the obstacles to become the masters of our own destiny. It has been quite a ride so far. Going into negotiations, I feel very optimistic about our ability to shape a positive future for TCRC Division 660. Remember, our collective success depends on your continued support and involvement.

See you at the meeting – nominations are open Sept 27th.

In solidarity,

George MacPherson
General Chairman
GCA Bombardier Division 660