BULLETIN 2019 # 5
APRIL 4, 2019
The Council and Bell have finally come to agreement as to what was bargained during our last round of negotiations around requests for Doctors notes for incidental absences as per Article 28.08. Below is a copy of a grievance settlement signed by both parties recently.
Unifor Local 506
Provincial Chief Steward
November 12, 2018
Re: Grievance 506-2018-21
Grievor: Unifor Local 506
The following is the company’s response to grievance 506-2018-21 submitted on October 5, 2018.
I have reviewed the concerns raised regarding managers requesting doctor’s certificate (note) related to an employee absence. The company maintains its right to request a doctor’s certificate attesting that an employee is unable to work if they are absent due to illness.
Our practice has included that prior to requesting a doctor’s certificate, the Company should review details related to the absence that have led to the request as well as the employee’s absence record. If after that review the Company determines there is a concern related to abuse of sickness absence or a pattern of absence, they will maintain their right to request a doctor’s certificate as per article 28.08. We will validate with the business units that these expectations are known.
The Company feels this addresses the concerns raised by the Union during the grievance process.
Director, Labour Relations
Cc: Union representation, Unifor Local 506
LIMITED RETIREMENT OFFER:
As we have spoken about in several past bulletins, the Council has notified Bell that we will be going to arbitration on this matter.
UNIFOR NATIONAL SURVEY ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT:
The results of the Unifor National Survey on Performance Management are out and posted on our ACL website.
The first annual Unifor Telecommunications Conference was held in Niagara Falls, Ontario the week of February 26-28, 2019. The conference was very informative and from the discussion, all Unifor Telecommunication Locals attending the event are experiencing similar issues when dealing with employers.
During the Telecommunications conference mentioned above, there was a presentation on a newly approved Federal Government bill, C-86.
This legislation should have very positive effects for workers when it comes into full affect.
It speaks to increases in paid and unpaid family leave, a ban on treating employees as contractors when they are not, and additionally, no pay differences if employees do substantially the same work.
This last point should be of much interest to members in our Bargaining Unit. We will be monitoring the situation closely in order to see how these changes in legislation are applied going forward.
GPS IN BELL VEHICLES:
In the last Bulletin we mentioned that the GPS systems are still collecting data in some Company vehicles. We have been given an update since then that Bell is implementing a new system called ‘Drive Well’. This is a cell phone-based system with a unit in the vehicle and has many micromanagement capabilities. The Union is watching the situation.
EMPLOYEE DISCOUNT PLAN:
We have received calls from members who believed they had been put on paperless billing as is required in order to receive the Bell 35% EDP. Sometime later the members realized they were not receiving the discount because as they were told, the “paperless” request must be made separately to both Bell Mobility and BellAliant.
Please check your Phone bill to ensure you are receiving your discount.
The 7th Biennial Council Locals Meeting will be held on May 5-7, 2019, in St. John’s, NL. The purpose of the Biennial Local Meeting is to exchange ideas and make policy recommendations to the Unifor ACL Executive Board and the National Union.
It will also provide a forum for member locals to share information, coordinate activities, and build on solidarity with one another. To see the full details of the Biennial, please go to Unifor ACL website.
ATLANTIC REGIONAL COUNCIL:
Atlantic Regional Council will hold its 6th Annual Meeting from May 1- 5, 2019, in St. John’s NL.
All Local Unions and subordinate bodies are members of their respective Regional Councils. These Councils are forums of accountability and organizing centers which involve and engage thousands of members from their respective regions.
CANADIAN CENTER FOR OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH & SAFETY:
The CCOHS has put out a smartphone app which allows users to complete the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire. This questionnaire has approximately 40 questions related to work demands, organizational factors, relationships, workplace values, health and safety concerns, stress symptoms and offensive behaviours.
This is simply a reminder to our members that there are resources available to help them get through challenging times.
BELL EMPLOYEE FAMILY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM 1 800 387 4765
Also, each ACL local has a Women’s Advocate available to offer support. – Local 506 Women’s Advocate is Erin Howell Sharpe 506-647-8882.
WORK LEAVING ATLANTIC CANADA:
If any member is aware of any work leaving Atlantic Canada and going to any other Bell bargaining unit, please contact your Shop Steward with this information.
It is very important that we identify this work, as it will be part of any future arbitration settlement.
LOCAL 401 ELECTIONS (PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND):
As mentioned in our last bulletin Cathy Morrell has stepped down from the ACL Executive Board. Jeff Nelson, Local 401 Vice President of Kings County has stepped in to take Cathy’s place.
Welcome aboard Jeff.
In New Brunswick, Ron Benoit is now region 4 Chief Steward and the Unifor 506 new rank-and-file is Stéphane Lamoureux, Chief Steward in New Brunswick. Again, welcome aboard Stéphane and thank you, Ron, for all the work you did for the council.
Bobby Macdonald, Lee Pearce, Sandy Brideau, Cullen Bolger, Faith Chaisson, Susan Rice, Jeff Nelson, Stéphane Lamoureux and National Rep Roch LeBlanc.